In December 2005 the Coastal Research contracted with the Pennsylvania Academy of Family Physicians to designate all 30 of Pennyslvania’s family medicine residency programs as “profiled residency programs” in the National Project on the Community Benefits of Family Medicine Residency Programs. This permits “big picture” analyses of the impact groups of residency programs, including programs at hospitals of different sizes, structures, and missions, have on a single state.
Survey site visits were conducted on all 30 programs. These in-person site visits and subsequent questionnaires have produced an extensive body of information on how these groups of programs have affected their communities and institutions.
An important feature of the contract is Coastal Research Group’s assistance of the Pennsylvania Academy in developing a data base with backgrounds and current practice locations of all practicing family physicians who graduated from the Pennyslvania family medicine residency programs. The data base will be supplemented by socioeconomic and population data presented by means of Geographic Information Systems software. Utilizing the resulting formatted data, the Coastal Research Group will help produce Geographic Information Systems maps displaying the distribution of graduates and relevant socioeconomic data.
The Coastal Research Group, based on information and data collected from the Site Visit Surveys, and following the formats developed by the National Project, contracted to assist each of the 30 residency programs in developing individual “community benefits reports” displaying the contributions of all of the family medicine residency programs. These will parallel regional community impact reports that will be developed for groups of residency programs.
The first of these regional reports, centering on impact of family medicine training on Pennsylvania’s “Rural T” – the counties in Central, Northwest and Northeast Pennsylvania – is currently being planned in cooperation with the Penn State Department of Family and Community Medicine in Hershey and the Pennsylvania Statewide Area Health Education Center.
The Coastal Research Group will provide advice and counsel to the Academy on ways to present the benefits of family medicine residency training to state and local officials and policy-makers, in furtherance of such legislative initiatives and policy discussions as the Academy might wish to pursue.
As noted elsewhere on this website, the Coastal Research Group scheduled the Sixth National Workshop on the Community Benefits of Family Medicine Residency Programs in Pittsburgh in September, 2006, and included on the agenda of that meeting plenary sessions on the benefits of family medicine residency training to the State of Pennsylvania, including geographic information system displays of such data on family medicine residency graduates and socioeconomic data.