Health system partnering on family medicine residency program


Bronson Battle Creek is a 228-bed hospital with all private rooms. Photo via

A health system is partnering with a medical school and community health center to create a new residency training program in family medicine.

Bronson Healthcare, the Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine and Grace Health are working on the program.

Bronson Battle Creek is seeking designation as a teaching hospital, which, once approved, would make the campus a destination for recent medical school graduates looking to complete their training and studies to become family medicine providers.

Bronson Healthcare President and CEO Frank Sardone cited a national shortage of physicians as a catalyst for creating a residency program at Bronson Battle Creek.

“Bronson is committed to doing all we can to improve access to care in our region,” Sardone said. “Establishing a teaching program at Bronson Battle Creek, similar to what we have in Kalamazoo, is a purposeful way to expand the base of primary care providers now and well into the future.”

Family medicine residency

Six new physicians would be accepted into the three-year curriculum at Bronson Battle Creek each year. When the residency is fully operational, there would be 18 family medicine residents practicing at any given time.

Residents would receive experience in nearly every medical discipline offered by Bronson Battle Creek, with training provided by new residency teaching staff and members of the hospital’s medical staff. Grace Health would serve as the outpatient training site.

The residency program is expected to be approved early this year, with recruitment for the first class beginning shortly thereafter. Training of the inaugural class of physicians would begin in summer of 2018.


Startup funding for the residency program is being provided by three grants of $1 million from the Bronson Healthcare Group, Bronson Battle Creek Hospital Community Partners and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

“For each of the community partners engaged in this exciting venture, we envision a win-win-win opportunity,” said La June Montgomery Tabron, president and CEO, W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

“These physician residents will provide care to residents of our area during their three years of training in Battle Creek. A significant number may then choose to stay in our community and create new practices or join existing ones. And throughout the process, there is a positive economic impact on our economy.”

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