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Twelve WSU School of Medicine “Alpha Class” Residents Complete Rural Rotation at Ocean Beach Hospital and Medical Clinics

The well-received residency training program will continue with a new round of residents arriving in July

ILWACO, Wash. – June 7, 2023 – Ocean Beach Hospital and Medical Clinics (OBHMC) will again welcome WSU School of Medicine’s Internal Medicine Residency Program second-year resident physicians for a month-long rotation starting in July, having completed training for residents in the inaugural year of the program on June 1, 2023. OBHMC, selected by the WSU School of Medicine as a rural training site, has benefited by hosting one resident a month since June 2022 and will continue to host rural training residents each month. A previous resident, now in the third year of training, has elected to return to OBHMC in August for an additional month of rural training.

“It’s our hope to potentially recruit and retain some of these trainees to join our local healthcare workforce,” said Dr. Belknap, who oversees the program locally. “Having one of our inaugural year residents choose to return for another month of elective rural training is very promising.”

Since beginning in July 2022, patient feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

“Patients love the additional level of care and attention that resident physicians deliver as a part of the health-care team,” said Dr. Belknap. “These highly trained physicians, bring enthusiasm and knowledge of the latest breakthroughs in general medicine, helping to elevate the compassionate, quality care that we currently provide to our patients.”

In an ongoing effort to bridge the rural/urban healthcare divide, Dr. Belknap and OBHMC work in partnership with Washington State University Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine Internal Medicine Residency Program (Everett) to bring this training program to South Pacific County. Dr. Belknap, with expertise in graduate medical education, is a Specialty Education Coordinator of Rural Medicine, clinical preceptor, and faculty for the program.

“Recruitment of medical professionals to rural areas is an ongoing challenge,” said Scot Attridge, CEO, OBHMC. “Inviting residents to train here now may inspire them to return as a provider in the future, one of the many benefits the WSU residency program brings to our rural community.”

About the WSU Internal Medicine Residency Program

The WSU Internal Medicine Residency Program integrates graduate medical education in teaching and community-based hospitals across the state. The program development was supported in part by a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), a department of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, aimed at improving access to rural health care. Under the WSU program, selected physicians are recruited with preference given to Washington residents and those who have a background or interest in rural health.

About Residency

Internal Medicine residency is a three-year clinical training program following graduation from medical school and is a requirement for Board Certification. “Residents” are doctors (MDs or DOs) in training. Residents are commonly referred to as R1, R2, or R3 based on their year of training.

Residency programs are specific to the specialty of medicine, for example, Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, OBGYN, or General Surgery. Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, and Pediatrics, among others, are three-year programs.

About Ocean Beach Hospital and Medical Clinics

Serving South Pacific County for over 89 years, Ocean Beach Hospital and Medical Clinics provides access to both routine and critical health-care services. OBHMC is community-owned and operated as a public hospital district and has received multiple recognitions for its excellence. OBHMC leverages affiliations, partnerships, and participation in programs such as the WSU Internal Medicine Residency to stay vibrant and strong in the face of nationwide healthcare challenges. Find out more at

Media Contact:

Carol Zahorsky
PR for Ocean Beach Hospital and Medical Clinics

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