The USF Health Morsani College of Medicine (MCOM) has launched a new residency training program in family medicine to add much-needed primary care practitioners to the Florida health care workforce.
The new USF Health Tampa General Hospital Family Medicine Residency program has received initial accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. Recruitment for applicants to the inaugural cohort has already begun.
In the last decade, MCOM has increased its focus on primary care efforts and was recently designated by U.S. News & World Report’s Academic Insights as the fastest rising medical school in the country in primary care. MCOM ranked #46 in the latest U.S. News ranking for U.S. medical schools in primary care.
“Creating this new residency is the natural next step in our mission to train tomorrow’s best primary care physicians,” said Charles J. Lockwood, MD, MHCM, executive vice president of USF Health and dean of MCOM. “Florida – and the nation – desperately need more primary care physicians, and we are excited to be able to increase access to health care for Florida patients.”
The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) predicts a national shortage of approximately 55,000 physicians within the next decade, and Florida ranks fifth in the nation for the most counties with significant lack of access to primary care.
“Our nation, and especially our state, is headed towards a profound shortage of physicians, particularly high-quality primary care physicians,” said Eric Coris, MD, professor and chair of the Department of Family Medicine at MCOM. “This residency will help us address this impending shortage in Florida, and in the Tampa Bay area, in particular.”
Residents in the new program will train primarily at out-patient facilities for USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and will receive in-patient training at Tampa General Hospital.
"This new family medicine residency program at Tampa General is an exceptional opportunity for residents to train under the supervision of some of the nation's leading physicians," said John Couris, president and CEO of Tampa General Hospital. "In partnership with USF Health Morsani College of Medicine, we're continuing to strengthen and expand the pipeline of talent to our region, particularly in the area of family medicine and contribute to the exceptional care offered at Tampa General now and for years to come. At the same time, we are fulfilling a tenant of our mission and academic medicine -- educating the next generation of health care professionals."
The USF TGH Family Medicine Residency program is being led by Karim Hanna, MD, associate professor in the Department of Family Medicine at MCOM.
“Our fantastic faculty at the Morsani College Medicine are excited for this new phase of training the next generation of high-quality primary care physicians,” Dr. Hanna said. “We plan to welcome our inaugural class in 2025, and look forward to shaping the future of family medicine in Tampa Bay and beyond.”
USF TGH Family Medicine Residency is a 3-year program with an optional fourth year for trainees to focus on interest areas, such as public health, informatics and artificial intelligence, business, or sports medicine. The program is accepting eight residents, ultimately filling to 24 physicians – eight in each of the three years of the program.
“Thanks to the launch of our new residency, we will be adding dozens of primary care physicians to this region’s health care workforce, along with the additional faculty coming on board to support the training,” Dr. Hanna said. “And those numbers will continue to grow across time as each year welcomes eight new physicians.”
Dr. Hanna said much of the new program’s success will be based on trainees’ access to state-of-the-art multidisciplinary care and collaboration with other USF programs beyond MCOM, including the College of Public Health, Taneja College of Pharmacy, College of Nursing, Muma College of Business, medical informatics, exercise science, and sports medicine/athletic medicine.
“All are optimal learning opportunities for our future residents,” Dr. Hanna said. “Our residents will graduate with the tools to navigate and optimize the digital landscape of healthcare, while being ready to provide community-oriented medicine. We hope to empower our residents to become advocates for health in the Tampa Bay area. The depth of clinical experiences in our program is unparalleled. Residents will have the opportunity to serve a diverse patient population in the Tampa Bay community, from preventive care to complex disease management. Our affiliation with Tampa General Hospital, a leading healthcare institution, ensures that our residents are exposed to state-of-the-art facilities and cutting-edge medical technologies.”
The new family medicine residencies add to MCOM’s growing Graduate Medical Education program, which recently added 48 expected training slots to a newly approved anesthesiology residency training program.
Family physicians provide comprehensive health care for people of all ages – from newborns to seniors – taking care of the whole patient throughout their lifespan, coordinating in-hospital care with specialists, helping navigate complex health care systems for extended care and services, and synchronizing these steps with follow-up evaluation and care.
In addition to access to a strong training program with a variety of clinical experiences in a vibrant metropolitan area, trainees in the new USF TGH Family Medicine Residency Program can work alongside the USF Health Department of Family Medicine’s strong sports medicine team, dedicated to providing care for athletes of all levels. Trainees will also be involved in research initiatives, medical student education, point-of-care ultrasound, clinical informatics, and sleep medicine.
Unique to the newly launched family medicine residency program is a focus on sports medicine, with an offering for a USF Health’s Sports Medicine Fellowship that provides specialized care to sports teams across our region, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, USF Athletics, Saint Leo University, USA Hockey, Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies.
USF Health is the largest multispecialty practice on Florida’s West Coast, with more than 1,000 providers in more than 30 specialties providing care to more than 1,000,000 patients annually, and offering a range of clinical experiences and training at our flagship outpatient center, USF Health Morsani Center for Advanced Healthcare, as well as its primary teaching affiliate, Tampa General Hospital.