(Press-News.org) MOREHEAD, Ky. (Nov. 17, 2023) — In celebration of National Rural Health Day, yesterday the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Medicaid in Kentucky announced new scholarship opportunities for UK’s Rural Physician Leadership Program (RPLP). The Anthem Rural Medicine Scholarships will provide $100,000 to offset the cost of medical school for students in the RPLP.
In a state that suffers from high rates for many chronic, preventable diseases, increasing the number of physicians practicing medicine in rural areas is crucial, says UK College of Medicine Dean Charles “Chipper” Griffith III, M.D.
“This generous gift will equip more mission-driven students with the training to become doctors who can fulfill vital health care needs in rural communities,” Griffith said. “The College of Medicine is incredibly grateful for Anthem’s commitment to enhancing health care access and allowing more students to fulfill their dreams.”
The Anthem Rural Medicine Scholarships will comprise seven awards totaling $100,000. These scholarships will be awarded over the next four years to fourth-year RPLP students who have a demonstrated financial need and intend to practice medicine in a rural area upon completion of their residency. This funding represents an investment in the future of rural health care in Kentucky, says Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Medicaid in Kentucky President Leon Lamoreaux.
“Anthem Medicaid is committed to closing the gap in health disparities and supporting Kentucky’s workforce through the implementation of innovative solutions that can reinvent health care across the state,” said Lamoreaux. “We are proud of this partnership with the University of Kentucky to expand support for students pursuing health care education. This effort helps guarantee the availability of high-quality care in every corner of the state, particularly in our rural and underserved communities where the need is most pronounced.”
Developed jointly by the UK College of Medicine, Morehead State University and St. Claire HealthCare, the Rural Physician Leadership Program was UK’s first foray into a regional-style medical campus. The program was developed to train students who are interested in practicing rural medicine after graduating, and the program has capacity for up to 12 students per year.
“As an educator myself, I am truly excited by this groundbreaking partnership between Anthem Medicaid and the University of Kentucky,” said Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman. “Our Commonwealth is in desperate need of new health care heroes — especially in rural communities — and education is the key to providing Kentuckians with transformational change.”
RPLP students complete their first two years of education on UK’s main campus in Lexington and spend years three and four in Morehead, rotating through St. Claire HealthCare and other rural clinical sites in the area.
The RPLP has been highly successful since its launch more than 10 years ago. Currently, the RPLP has graduated 110 physicians well-versed in rural medicine, with half of them going into primary care residencies: internal medicine, pediatrics and family medicine.
In Kentucky, 61% of the greatest physician needs are in rural areas. Of all the RPLP graduates, 46 are currently practicing rural medicine; 35 of those specifically in Kentucky. Many of the students in this program come from rural, underserved areas, and have a strong desire to make a difference in communities that need greater health care access. The RPLP gives these students the perfect opportunity to live, work and learn in the type of communities they want to serve.
Clark county native Makayla Arnett, a fourth-year medical student with the RPLP, knew she wanted to become a physician from an early age. Coming from a rural area — and being the first in her family to pursue a health care career — she initially wasn’t sure how to make her dream happen. While attending Morehead State University for her undergraduate degree, Arnett discovered the RPLP and knew it was the perfect fit for her.
“My educational experiences here in Morehead have been irreplaceable. My clinical rotations have solidified my love for health care and the Appalachian region,” she said. “As a future physician, my goal is to impact my patients’ lives and my community, and provide compassionate care to people who need it most. The Rural Physician Leadership Program has given me that and so much more.”
The RPLP’s ongoing success has had another tangible benefit — alumni of the program are eager to give back. In Morehead, eight RPLP alumni are currently practicing physicians who now serve as faculty for the program.
“Our alumni all say, ‘I’m so glad I made the decision to join the RPLP.’ By having the resources from a large institution like UK combined with the smaller, close-knit learning environment, I think this program really brings out the best in all medical training,” said Rebecca Todd, M.D., associate dean for the RPLP and an OB/GYN at the UK HealthCare Morehead Women’s Health Clinic located at St. Claire HealthCare. “Receiving funding like these scholarships will support students who are passionate about practicing rural medicine and serving their communities, with the ultimate goal of improving health care in our state.”
The first round of Anthem Rural Medicine Scholarships will be announced at the RPLP’s Match Day Celebration in March. Match Day is a long-standing medical school tradition, a nationwide event where medical students learn where they have matched for their residencies following graduation.
Today’s announcement builds on Anthem Medicaid’s recent partnerships with several other higher education institutions across Kentucky, including Hazard Community and Technical College, Murray State University, University of Louisville, Western Kentucky University and Eastern Kentucky University. Since 2021, Anthem Medicaid has awarded nearly $1 million to expand education and access to rural health care across the Commonwealth.
Anthem Medicaid currently serves more than 180,000 individuals in the Commonwealth, of which over 40% live in rural areas.
As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.
In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.
UK’s Rural Physician Leadership Program, Anthem Medicaid announce new rural medicine scholarships
ELSE PRESS RELEASES FROM THIS DATE:
Heart repair via neuroimmune crosstalk
Unlike humans, zebrafish can completely regenerate their hearts after injury. They owe this ability to the interaction between their nervous and immune systems, as researchers led by Suphansa Sawamiphak from the Max Delbrück Center now report in the journal Developmental Cell. Each year, more than 300,000 people in Germany have a myocardial infarction – the technical term for heart attack. The number of people surviving a heart attack has increased significantly, but this severe cardiac event causes irreparable damage to their hearts. A heart attack ...
BU researchers develop new method to help with analysis of single cell data
(Boston)—CITE-seq (cellular indexing of transcriptomes and epitopes) is an RNA sequencing-based method that simultaneously quantifies cell surface protein and transcriptomic data within a single cell readout. The ability to study cells concurrently offers unprecedented insights into new cell types, disease states or other conditions. While CITE-seq solves the problem of detecting a limited number of proteins while using single-cell sequencing in an unbiased way, one of its limitations is the high levels of background noise that can hinder analysis. To rectify ...
Azerbaijan women behind global average for thalassemia screening and genetic counselling | BGI Insight
5.2% of the global population carry hemoglobin abnormalities, resulting in 300,000 to 400,000 children born with severe hemoglobinopathies annually. Thalassemia, a hereditary hemoglobinopathy, occurs in 4.4 out of every 10,000 live births, and is prevalent in Mediterranean coastal areas, Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and southern China. To facilitate greater understanding of thalassemia, a hereditary hemoglobinopathy, BGI Genomics today released its State of Thalassemia Awareness Report. This report assesses the level of knowledge and attitudes related to the associated health risks, thalassemia carrier ...
Alliance and WEF sign agreement for Food Action Alliance
The Alliance Bioversity International and CIAT signed an agreement with the World Economic Forum that enables the Alliance to manage initiatives under the Food Action Alliance, a movement led by the World Economic Forum for transforming sustainable food systems. The Alliance would establish and manage initiatives in Latin America, the Caribbean, and other regions under the Food Action Alliance to boost the transformation of food systems, facilitating and scaling up multi-stakeholder flagship initiatives in specific countries mostly with multi-national companies such as Bayer, Microsoft, PepsiCo, AB InBev; among others. The Food Action Alliance will continue to grow initiatives ...
USDA introduces a multi-year plan to strengthen U.S. genebank management of plant germplasm
WASHINGTON, November 17, 2023 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released today the National Strategic Germplasm and Cultivar Collection Assessment and Utilization Plan in support of the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) U.S. National Plant Germplasm System’s (NPGS) mission. The USDA-ARS NPGS is confident that implementing this plan will address current operational and research challenges. The collection is vital for maintaining the nation’s food supply by providing breeders and researchers the germplasm they need to furnish U. S. consumers with abundant, ...
Unravelling the secrets of neurodegenerative diseases, one protein at a time
Proteins misfolding and clumping together, a process known as aggregation, is a key feature seen in several neurological conditions, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. These disorders involve the formation of small, potentially harmful structures called oligomers, which could serve as valuable indicators for early diagnosis. They are incredibly small, however, and much rarer than the healthy non-aggregated proteins. This makes it hard to detect and measure them accurately. In collaboration with UCB Biopharma, researchers from the University of Edinburgh’s ...
A world's first in validating a UNFCCC report by a cost-efficient and transparent method to measure CO2 emission estimates using GOSAT
Researchers in Japan and Mongolia have carried out the world's first instance of incorporating satellite-based CO2 emission estimates into a GHG emission report as the verification on the Second Biennial Update Report (BUR2) of Mongolia submitted to the UNFCCC on 15 November 2023, resulting in high accuracy match with actual reported values, reports a new study published online in Scientific Reports in 2023. Countries have reported their CO2 emissions to the UNFCCC, primarily from human activities and a significant contributor to climate change. ...
New cooling mechanism set to revolutionize conventional environmentally harmful refrigeration technologies
Approximately one-fifth of the world's electric energy is dedicated to refrigeration, and the International Energy Agency anticipates a twofold increase in the number of air conditioning units by 2040. Despite a century of advancements, existing refrigeration systems, relying on vapour compression, have hit their thermodynamic threshold. These systems not only emit greenhouse gases, contributing to environmental issues, but also produce significant noise. Prioritizing the development of energy-efficient and eco-friendly systems is thus paramount to address global warming ...
When growth becomes a weakness
Growth is a fundamental biological process and a prerequisite for living organisms to develop and reproduce. The processes of cell growth (i.e. the production of new biomass) and of cell division must be coordinated with each other. In multicellular organisms such as humans, the growth of cells must also be coordinated with their environment so that cells are present in the right number and size to form functional tissue or organs. Cell growth is therefore strictly regulated and takes place only when certain growth signals are present. But cancer cells are different. They grow unchecked, they divide ...
HKU Engineering ‘Super Steel’ team develops new ultra stainless steel for hydrogen production
A research project led by Professor Mingxin Huang at the Department of Mechanical Engineering of the University of Hong Kong (HKU) has made a brand-new breakthrough over conventional stainless steel and the development of stainless steel for hydrogen (SS-H2). This marks another major achievement by Professor Huang’s team in its ‘Super Steel’ Project, following the development of the anti-COVID-19 stainless steel in 2021, and ultra-strong and ultra-tough Super Steel in 2017 and 2020 respectively. The new steel developed by the team exhibits high corrosion ...