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Students May Be Solution to Shortage of Medical Professionals
Date:6/11/2009

$2.4 Million Grant from Kaiser Permanente places students in pharmacy, dental medicine and medicine in rural Colorado.

Aurora, Colo (Vocus) June 11, 2009 -- Colorado is facing a shortage of medical professionals, especially in rural communities, causing some people to forgo preventive care or treatment for serious illnesses. Kaiser Permanente is now teaming up with the University of Colorado Denver’s health sciences programs to provide a unique solution to the shortage by training more medical professionals interested in rural health practices.

As part of its community benefit program, Kaiser Permanente made a $2.4 million dollar grant to establish the University of Colorado Denver's Interdisciplinary Rural Training and Service Program (IRTS).

"I applaud the University of Colorado Denver and Kaiser Permanente, two local health care leaders, for pushing the envelope and thinking innovatively about the type of public-private partnership that can address critical health needs in our state," said Gov. Bill Ritter.

The IRTS program will build upon successful but independent programs in the School of Medicine, the School of Dental Medicine and the School of Pharmacy. It will combine the disciplines so students practice together, gaining a greater appreciation for the way their specialties can collaborate to improve patient care. The ultimate goal of the IRTS is to apply an integrated training approach in order to increase the number of students and enhance access to care in Colorado's Delta, Garfield, Routt, Jackson and other rural counties.

"We know first-hand that patients are happier with their care, physicians are more satisfied, and medical outcomes are improved when care is delivered in a coordinated fashion," said Jandel Allen-Davis, MD, vice president of government and external affairs for Kaiser Permanente Colorado. "The beauty
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