The ACGME recently announced that the University of Minnesota / CentraCare Willmar Rural Family Medicine Residency Program has received initial accreditation.  

From its inception, this program has been a collaborative project. It is supported by a Federal HRSA grant along with funds and expertise from the Minnesota Department of Health, especially Zora Radosevich and Nitika Moibi.

These seeds have been nurtured by the University of Minnesota Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, particularly Shailey Prasad, MD, MPH, vice chair for education; Keri Bergeson, MD, director of rural programs; and Melissa Stevens, MA, administrator, rural programs, along with CentraCare Health system, particularly Tom Satre, MD, St. Cloud Family Medicine Residency program director and Stacey Heiling, CentraCare senior director of rural health initiatives with local support in Willmar by program administrator Molly Gardner.

Specifically, Molly has applied the great skill and tremendous effort needed to take on the multi-faceted role of program administrator for a new program. Colleagues at the national RTT Collaborative (now RMTC) provided consultation and expert advice on program development, and the University of Minnesota Office of Graduate Medical Education helped with navigating University of Minnesota and ACGME processes. It has taken the entire village to create this program.

This news allows program development to continue in earnest. The program is now recruiting, hosting medical students, and preparing for a busy interview and 2025 resident match process. The first PGY1 residents start in July 2025.

“On behalf of our program, our future residents and most importantly our patients in rural Minnesota, thank you for your support. We look forward to continuing this work together,” said Richard A. Wehseler, MD, director, UMN/CentraCare Willmar Rural Family Medicine Residency Program.

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