Dr. Kathryn R. Martin, administrator of the Chatham County, Ga., Health Department, has been named assistant dean of the Southeast Georgia Clinical Campus of the Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine based at Savannah’s St. Joseph’s/Candler Health System. Dr. Martin, an administrator and educator who has worked at MCG and Mercer University School of Medicine in Macon, joins the faculty July 1.
“Dr. Martin knows everyone in health care up and down Georgia’s coast,” says Dr. Linda Boyd, associate dean for regional campus coordination in the MCG School of Medicine. “She is an experienced educator who has managed graduate programs, an experienced administrator who has managed large, multi-site health care programs and she helped plan the international G8 Summit in Sea Island in 2004. Perhaps most importantly, she is a dynamic person who has the ability to connect with people and has such enthusiasm for her work.”
“As Georgia’s population increases, so does the demand for physicians and other health care professionals,” Dr. Martin says. “MCG School of Medicine’s expansion in southeast Georgia enables that part of the state to play a greater role in meeting this important challenge. I am privileged to help.”
The medical school’s new Southeast Georgia Clinical Campus is a cooperative endeavor based at St. Joseph’s/Candler Health System in Savannah that will include hospitals and physicians throughout southeast Georgia, Dr. Boyd said. These include Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah and new partner Southeast Georgia Hospital in Brunswick, where more than 75 physicians have expressed interest in helping teach medical students. MCG medical students already take clinical rotations in the southeastern Georgia cities of Jesup, Blackshear and Waycross and MCG is looking to expand into other nearby cities including Statesboro, Dr. Boyd said.
MCG and St. Joseph’s/Candler Health System announced in May 2007 the partnership that will lead to a residential clinical campus for third- and fourth-year medical students. “We are very excited about this program, its past successes and its future potential,” say St. Joseph’s/Candler President and CEO Paul P. Hinchey. “The selection of an assistant dean will further enhance St. Joseph’s/Candler’s affiliation with the Medical College of Georgia and move us even closer toward our ultimate goal of a regional clinical campus in Savannah.”
This past academic year, MCG students completed rotations in neurology and emergency medicine at St. Joseph’s/Candler. Nearly 100 physicians have expressed interest in becoming volunteer faculty, and the health system plans to soon add rotations in primary care, family practice, internal medicine, general surgery, obstetrics/gynecology and pediatrics, Mr. Hinchey says.
The Savannah program already has been a very successful experience for physicians and students, says Dr. Richard Shields, emergency medicine physician and volunteer faculty member. “Not only does the program give the second- and third-year medical student an opportunity to work alongside experienced physicians, it can be a refreshing learning experience for the physician as well. When you have a group of very bright, young minds questioning ‘why you do, what you do, the way you do it,’ their presence can keep you very sharp and very much on your toes.”
Savannah neurologist and volunteer faculty member Julia Mikell concurs. “I believe the partnership between St. Joseph’s/Candler and the Medical College of Georgia has been a win-win situation for everyone involved, but most importantly for future patients,” Dr. Mikell says. “Receiving proper training and reality-based experience for these students today can only serve to make them better physicians tomorrow.”
The new assistant dean’s previous experience includes serving as district program manager for the Georgia Department of Public Health’s East Health District 9-1 in Savannah. She served as public health mission coordinator for the G8 Summit in 2004, has directed health sciences administration and program development at Mercer University Health Sciences Center and managed Mercer Medical School’s master of public health program. She has been a deputy director and clerkship coordinator for Georgia Statewide Area Health Education Centers, a cooperative effort of MCG and Mercer. She facilitated problem-based learning courses at MCG in 1999.
Dr. Martin earned a doctorate of philosophy in health administration from Kennedy-Western University in Cheyenne, Wyo. in 2006 and master of public administration and bachelor of arts degrees in sociology from Augusta State University.
In January 2008, an expansion plan produced by the Pittsburgh-based consulting firm Tripp Umbach called for the MCG School of Medicine to expand statewide to 1,200 students by 2020, from 745 students currently, an increase of approximately 60 percent. The consultant’s study recommends expansion simultaneously at MCG’s home base of Augusta; at MCG’s two clinical campuses, Southwest Georgia Clinical Campus, based at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital in Albany, and the new southeast clinical campus in Savannah; and through the development of a new four-year MCG/University of Georgia Partnership Campus in Athens. The plan calls for 200 additional students in Augusta, a total of 60 students doing clinical rotations at the Savannah and Albany campuses and 240 students at the Athens campus within about 10 years.
View all press releases on our News page.