The Florida State University College of Medicine (FSU) and Sarasota Memorial Health Care System received approval to launch a new Emergency Medicine residency program to help meet healthcare and physician workforce needs in Sarasota and surrounding communities.

Approval by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), the sanctioning body of graduate medical education in the U.S. and Canada, clears the way for the new Emergency Medicine residency program to run alongside the Internal Medicine residency program that FSU and SMH started last year – programs that are critical to addressing physician shortages in the Sarasota, Florida region, according to SMH CEO David Verinder.

Medical school graduates are required to complete residency training in their chosen specialty in order to gain board certification and become an independently practicing physician. Numerous studies have shown that most physicians end up practicing near where they completed residency training.

“Now that we have ACGME approval, our plan is to begin interviewing prospective residents this fall and to welcome a first class of nine residents in July of 2019,” said Kelly O’Keefe, MD, the program’s founding director. “The program will emphasize clinical excellence, the development of leadership skills and business acumen, patient safety and quality improvement, and physician wellness. We expect that our graduates will serve our local communities well into the future.”