Graduate Medical Education program adds value to Gainesville, Hall County and the entire Northeast Georgia region

June 13, 2018

Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) is eagerly preparing to welcome its first internal medicine and general surgery resident physicians, who will arrive in July 2019. By 2024, NGMC anticipates 170 resident physicians across six different specialties – internal medicine, family medicine, general surgery, OB/GYN, psychiatry, and emergency medicine.

The Graduate Medical Education (GME) program is a strategic initiative for NGMC to encourage our doctors to stay in Georgia to practice medicine – and we hope to keep the best and brightest right here in our region.  Recent research completed by the Georgia Board of Physician Workforce found that medical students from Georgia who complete medical school and a GME program in Georgia have an estimated 80 percent chance of staying in the state to practice medicine.

Besides motivating medical students to stay in Georgia, there are countless ways in which GME programs work to improve the host institution, as well as its community. Here are just a few of the benefits that GME programs have to offer:

Benefits to the Community

Training program graduates who stay in Georgia to work in their training institutions contribute to the success of the hospital, use local facilities and enhance the overall patient base. GME programs generally improve their surrounding communities by providing medical support for complex care services such as trauma, and by providing accessible care for medically uninsured populations. Nationwide, these programs provide millions of dollars of free care each year to uninsured and underserved individuals – including patients with HIV and AIDS, homeless people and refugees. 1 Further, reviews of observational studies have found an advantage in care quality among teaching hospitals versus non-teaching hospitals.2

Focus on Organization-Wide Learning

Our GME program marks the shift toward an increased focus on organization-wide learning. By creating teaching-specialty and procedure clinics and bringing professional development opportunities to local physicians, teaching programs based in community hospitals are able to provide outpatient services such as flu shot clinics, school health and nursing home support. Community-oriented primary care projects sponsored by a training program frequently result in better health outcomes and lower healthcare costs. Better health and lower costs can, in turn, have a positive economic impact on the sponsoring institution — particularly if the population is indigent or participates in a managed care system — and can lead to increased grant support, philanthropy and expansion of the referral base.

Economic Boost

Research conducted by the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government found that Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s GME program will provide a tremendous benefit to the Hall County economy. Between 2019 and 2023, the GME program is expected to provide an economic output of $66 million — with an additional $18 million local economic impact for each subsequent year. The GME program will also generate more than 90 new local jobs by 2019, and as many as 300 jobs by 2023.

The launch of the GME program marks an exciting time for Northeast Georgia Medical Center and its community. Stay up-to-date on the GME program’s latest news and progress by following our Facebook page.

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About Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s GME program

Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s (NGMC) Graduate Medical Education program will begin receiving applications for the Internal Medicine and General Surgery Residency Programs in August 2018 and will match the inaugural class in the spring of 2019. The Northeast Georgia Medical Center Graduate Medical Education program is designed to train residents to be leaders in the medical field as well as in the community.  All residents will receive education beyond the six core competencies with a unique focus on the patient experience and methodologies of a High-Reliability Organization and Lean principles. Learn more about the NGMC GME program.

About Northeast Georgia Health System

Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) is a non-profit institution on a mission of improving the health of our community in all we do. Our team cares for more than 800,000 people across the region through three hospitals and a variety of outpatient locations. Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) has three hospital campuses – NGMC Gainesville, NGMC Braselton, and NGMC Barrow – with a total of 713 beds and more than 700 medical staff members representing more than 50 specialties. Learn more at