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Our Education Philosophy


Smoky Hill Family Medicine Residency Program is community-based, and this makes all the difference. We believe that the educational, philosophical and practical needs of family medicine residents who desire to practice rural medicine are best met in a non-tertiary care setting. The Salina community offers a broad patient case mix necessary to train competent, confident and caring family physicians who will work on the front lines of the health care system. The availability of superbly trained specialists and the rapid implementation of new medical technology allow for the most cutting edge training possible. At the same time, our residents learn the unique skills of long-distance interaction with and appropriately transferring patients to subspecialist care at the various medical centers of Wichita and Kansas City.


Continuity of care is at the core of rural family medicine and is part of the everyday training at Smoky Hill Family Medicine Residency Program. Each Smoky Hill resident assumes care for a panel of patients in our outpatient clinic, Salina Family HealthCare Center, providing their on-going comprehensive care during the entire three years of residency. A team of faculty and residents provide the bulk of inpatient care with the patient's primary resident physician involved in that care, as well. Upon discharge, patients make their follow-up appointments with their assigned resident physician. When appropriate, our patients also receive care in their private homes and at the nursing home. This comprehensive longitudinal care experience, whether in the office, hospital, private home or nursing home, is the core educational experience of the program.


Full range family medicine is a fact of life for rural family physicians. Smoky Hill understands this need. Our patients truly span the extremes of age and medical needs, and residents learn all applicable office procedures to care for these patients. Four-week-long block rotations in the major disciplines of inpatient and outpatient family medicine, internal medicine, surgery, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, cardiology, orthopedics and sports medicine, community and behavioral science and emergency medicine give a breadth of experience unrivaled in medical education. Wide-ranging didactic instruction from local and regional experts during noon conferences complement the practical experience gained in the wards.