The goal is to prepare the next generation of PAs for the New World of Health Care
Patients from infancy to the elderly now can come to the Family Medicine Clinic at Ketchum Health for world-class primary care.
PA students will staff the clinic under the guidance of Medical Director Brandon Grove, MD, and Sandra Fineman, PA-C, Director of Clinical Education. MBKU’s PA students will help patients from infancy, and children to adults, including those with chronic or acute conditions.
The Patient is at the Center of Everything
“The clinic provides an interprofessional experience for students, which is unique,” PA Fineman says. “For patients with multiple medications or diseases, we can conduct a consult with our College of Pharmacy or if they have a multisystem disease that affects the eyes, they have access to the University Eye Center.”
Dr. Grove, a faculty member at the School of Physician Assistant Studies at Marshall B. Ketchum University, is excited to practice medicine in such a way that puts the patient at the center. At each appointment, PA students and faculty give patients plenty of time for communication and education.
“We’ve all heard of or experienced interactions where you walk in and the doctor doesn't even look at you as they're typing in their computer,” Dr. Grove says. “That's not the experience that will happen here. Our goal is individualized care based on the patient’s family history, demographics and all the aspects of life that affect their health care.”
Students at the Front Line
For PA students, working in the clinic is a place where they not only practice everything they’ve learned through the didactic phase of their education, but also where they ask questions, collaborate with faculty and their colleagues across the University and create patient plans that address the whole person.
“Family Medicine is the model of the future where we have a team of health care providers delivering comprehensive care for greater amounts of people, particularly in underserved areas,” Dr. Grove says.
Patients who come to the clinic are also helping to shape the future of providers. “When they’re patients here, they’re not only getting the best care, but they’re also contributing to the future of what health care will look like,” PA Fineman says. “The student is going to learn that it is more than diagnosing and treating, it is listening to the patient who is giving them feedback.”
One of the common characteristics Dr. Grove sees among his students is their passion for serving.
“We have students who have traveled the world, nurses and veterans, including a corpsman who was an IT specialist in the Middle East,” he says. “The wealth of experience these students will bring to each patient encounter is amazing.”
A Growing Demand
The need for PAs to cover the projected demand for primary care services is increasing, according to a report by the Health Resources and Services Administration. Factors such as aging and population growth as well as the expansion of health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act contribute to the importance of training the next generation of PAs.
When the clinic is operating at full capacity, they will be able to see 20-30 patients a day. This is a far cry from the typical clinic volume, but the primary focus is quality patient care. “It’s not all about the bottom line here,” Fineman says. “If they need extra time to discuss problems, we have that time to give.”
For Dr. Grove, who worked in private practice for 16 years, this is a full-circle chapter in his life. Originally, he intended to teach but instead pursued his MD at the University of California, Davis. He joined the School of Physician Assistant Studies faculty full time in 2016 and helped to open Ketchum Health’s Family Medicine clinic in 2018.
“We’re here to prepare PAs for the next innovative wave where we have a lot of midlevel providers caring for 90% of the patients who walk in through the door,” he says. “In this role, I’m part of the solution to streamline health care, provide more practitioners to care for the underserved and give patients the compassion and attention they need to live healthy productive lives.”
In addition to offering same-day appointments and accepting most major insurance plans, the clinic serves some of Orange County's neediest patients.
“As a nonprofit, we’re not capping Medicare or Medicaid patients,” PA Fineman says. “Our focus is on patient care.”
If you would like to find out more about Family Medicine at Ketchum Health, call 714.463.7505 or visit ketchumhealth.org
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