The Wright Centers for Community Health and Graduate Medical Education receive federal grants to plan and develop 3 new residency programs
The Wright Centers for Community Health and Graduate Medical Education have been awarded three grant awards totaling $1.5 million from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) for the planning and development of three residency programs, further expanding and enriching physician training opportunities in Northeast Pennsylvania.
As a nearly 50-year-old nonprofit enterprise providing graduate medical education and primary health services in Northeastern Pennsylvania, The Wright Center, along with partnering institutions and community providers, intends to explore establishing accredited residency programs in pediatric dentistry, pediatrics, and obstetrics and gynecology.
Dr. Jumee Barooah
Designated Institutional Official
“We are grateful for the high-impact financial support from HRSA’s Bureau of Health Workforce program and Congressman Cartwright’s reliable leadership support for our mission and our region,” said Dr. Jumee Barooah, The Wright Center’s designated institutional official. “These graduate medical education planning and development grants will allow The Wright Center to invite and convene inclusive community stakeholders to strategic planning conversations inspired by a shared understanding of the impact of these training programs to increase access to primary health services and future career opportunities for children and adults in the communities we serve.”
This federal grant funding was made available through HRSA’s Bureau of Health Workforce Teaching Health Center Planning and Development Program, using appropriations from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. The initiative is intended to strengthen and expand community-based residency programs in rural and other medically underserved communities across the United States.
HRSA’s Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education funding is allocated specifically for physician and dental training that includes community-based and governed care settings, such as The Wright Center for Community Health’s Federally Qualified Health Center Look-Alike venues. The training opportunities created for these residents help to expand and improve the distribution of the nation’s primary health services workforce beyond affluent urban areas to economically disadvantaged areas.
As a grant awardee, The Wright Center may apply its funding to startup costs, including planning meetings, curriculum development, recruitment and training of residents and faculty, and necessary activities related to obtaining program accreditation from either the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) or the Commission on Dental Accreditation.
The successful introduction of these programs will represent another milestone in The Wright Center’s continued strategic growth as a generator of compassionate, highly skilled, and patient-centered physicians who can help to address the region’s and nation’s ongoing health care services inequities and workforce shortages.
The nonprofit organization was founded in 1976 as the Scranton-Temple Residency Program. A year later, it welcomed its first class of six internal medicine residents. Since then, the organization has been renamed and has grown in size and scope to reflect the community’s – and the country’s – evolving needs. It now trains about 250 residents and fellows each academic year in the region and at partner training sites in Arizona, Ohio, Washington state, and Washington, D.C.
The Wright Center currently offers residencies in internal medicine, family medicine, physical medicine & rehabilitation, and psychiatry, as well as fellowships in cardiovascular disease, gastroenterology, and geriatrics. All of its residency and fellowship programs are accredited by the ACGME.
Additionally, in partnership with NYU Langone Dental Medicine, The Wright Center has served as a training site since 2021 for dentists in an Advanced Education in General Dental Residency Program.