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HRSA accepts Wright Center scholars’ research abstract for presentation


The federal Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) has accepted a scholarly research abstract from The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education for presentation at its highly competitive national conference in April.

Dr. Nirali Patel, a board-certified internal medicine and board-eligible geriatrics physician and associate program director of the Geriatrics Fellowship and core faculty for internal medicine, will present the paper, “Value Impact of a Community-Based, Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education-Accredited Geriatrics Fellowship Immersion in an Essential Community Provider’s COVID-19 Response.” She co-authored the abstract with Drs. Linda Thomas-Hemak, president and CEO; Jumee Barooah, designated institutional official, Edward Dzielak, a geriatrics and internal medicine physician and program director of the Geriatrics Fellowship, and Ronakkumar Patel, a resident physician in the internal medicine program.

The abstract, one of 72 accepted for presentation, illustrates how HRSA’s investment in The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education’s Geriatrics Fellowship led to the successful training of its first graduating class during the height of the pandemic. Fellows acted as a key pandemic workforce, offering safely managed and supervised in-person clinic, home-based and telehealth visits for geriatric patients.

In addition, fellows also engaged in deployment of The Wright Center for Community Health’s 34-foot mobile medical unit, Driving Better Health, to deliver primary health services, as well as COVID-19 testing, monoclonal antibody infusions and vaccinations at senior living facilities. Along with primary care residents, geriatric fellows formed a vital workforce for the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s Education Support and Clinical Coaching Program that provided support to personal care, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities. 

HRSA’s abstract review committee chose the research article for its Bureau of Health Workforce Virtual All Grantee and Stakeholder Meeting. The focus of the meeting is for participants to learn from grantees and trainees about programs, ideas and research that can improve the health workforce.

Overall, The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education has had 75 scholarly abstracts, written on a wide array of topics in medicine, accepted for presentation at professional conferences since the beginning of the 2021-22 academic year.

The fellowship in geriatrics is a one-year program that emphasizes quality of care and a deep understanding of socioeconomic determinants of health for older patients that face the unique health challenges that come with aging. 

For more information about The Wright Centers for Community Health and Graduate Medical Education, go to thewrightcenter.org or call 570.343.2383.

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