Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Awarded Residency Program Funding

The funding can benefit a new surgical residency

surgery residents learning at TTUHSC

The award includes funding to support a potential new general surgery residency program on the Amarillo campus

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) recently announced the Graduate Medical Education (GME) Expansion Program award recipients for 2024-2025. The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) Amarillo campus was one of more than 30 residency training sites in the state to receive this critical funding. In total, the TTUHSC Amarillo campus was awarded $1.8 million.  

“The training of physicians is a costly undertaking, and this expense has traditionally been covered by the federal government,” TTUHSC School of Medicine Interim Regional Dean Brian Weis, said. “However, as the demand for physicians, and thus, physician training programs, grows, the expense of training has increasingly fallen on state and local resources such as hospitals or academic medical centers. The generous grants from the THECB will permit TTUHSC to continue to support its training programs with the consideration of expanding residency slots.”

The funding will go to support current and expanded residency slots in family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. The award also includes funding to support a potential new general surgery residency program on the Amarillo campus. If approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), a surgical residency program could begin in Amarillo by 2025.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the projected job growth of physicians and surgeons nationwide from 2020 to 2030 is slower than average at 3%. However, demand for physicians is projected to increase due to the aging and growing population.
 
“As TTUHSC works to grow the health care workforce in the Panhandle, we are committed to establishing a surgical residency program at TTUHSC in the coming years,” Izi Obokhare, M.D., TTUHSC School of Medicine associate professor and surgical residency program director, said. “Training residents in the Panhandle will provide additional medical support at area hospitals while they’re getting their surgical training. Subsequently, the goal is to retain these physicians to practice in the area after completing their residencies or fellowships.”

According to the American Association of Medical Colleges, 66.1% of individuals who completed residency training in Texas stayed in the state to practice medicine after finishing their training.  

“All of the TTUHSC Amarillo residency programs have resulted in physicians remaining in the community and serving the population of the Texas Panhandle region,” Weis said.

Awards are contingent upon verification that the residency positions selected for funding have been filled, a Notice of Grant Award (NOGA) has been executed, and if applicable, THECB receipt of the Disclosure of Interested Parties form.

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