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ALBUQUERQUE – Three University of New Mexico School of Medicine students completed their first year in medical school this summer by helping Los Alamos residents with their health and wellness through mid-August at two sites in Los Alamos that include a family medicine clinic and medical center.
More than 100 first-year UNM medical students began their six-week rural rotation this month in 22-plus communities throughout New Mexico, from Las Vegas to Las Cruces; Gallup to Clovis.
As part of their nationally recognized curriculum, the students are talking with patients, conducting physical examinations with their preceptors, and performing a community project designed to address specific community health care and/or educational needs.
Through the UNM School of Medicine’s Practical Immersion Experience (PIE), medical students are placed in outlying primary care practices — predominantly family medicine practices, but also internal medicine practices and occasionally rural emergency rooms — to experience medical practice in New Mexico’s rural communities.
“The PIE is an invaluable, unique component of medical education here at UNM, teaching students about varying cultures, patient empathy and the general health care system, while having a significant impact on where students consider practicing once they’re out of school,” said Daniel L. Stulberg, M.D., professor with the Department of Family and Community Medicine and PIE director. “They can quickly become attached to their patients and the communities in which they work. They also each participate in community projects like Project Heart Start, the Childhood Obesity Zip Code Project, the Vision Project providing free eye exams and other innovative programs that benefit local citizens.”
For more information on UNM’s PIE Program, call 505-272-4590.