From the Director

Thank you for your interest in the Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency!

We are a diverse community of learners committed to providing compassionate and comprehensive primary care to the rural and structurally vulnerable communities of central Maine through a training program for residents and students that aims to be both rigorous and personally fulfilling.

MDFMR was founded in 1973, and has advocated for the value and relevance of the family doctor on the local and national stages ever since. Our initial goal was to train physicians in the full breadth of primary care to serve rural communities in Maine; now we feel confident that our graduates have both the clinical acumen as well as the independent learning skills to provide basic health care for all people anywhere in the country or around the world.

Community-based rural family practice

We are the only primary care residency in our community hospital, MaineGeneral Medical Center’s Alfond Center for Health, and therefore we offer a hands-on, experiential style of learning that provides an accurate preparation for work in medically underserved or rural areas. Our residents are experienced in newborn resuscitation and stabilization and transfer of critically ill adult and obstetric patients. Intrinsic to our community-based setting is that MDFMR faculty physicians are role models in providing full spectrum primary care, attending with residents in the ICU, labor and delivery, nursing homes, and outpatient clinics.

A few of our strengths:  Osteopathy – Integrative Medicine – Geriatric Medicine – Sports Medicine  – Dermatology – Community Activism

upper left_Mark OMT_family-medicine-resident-trainingAt Maine-Dartmouth we are particularly proud of several unique aspects of our curriculum. First, we are an integrated allopathic/ osteopathic residency accredited through the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) with Osteopathic Recognition. Our MD and DO residents both benefit from a three-year longitudinal curriculum in osteopathy as well as from the integration of osteopathic manipulative medicine into the primary care office and inpatient setting.

In addition, residents are exposed to teaching by fellows and faculty in geriatric medicine, osteopathic neuromusculoskeletal medicine (ONMM), and sports medicine. Through our geriatric medicine fellowship we offer extensive exposure to nursing home continuity care, interdisciplinary team-based assessment, inpatient and outpatient consultative care, and geriatrics systems of care. We have family practice and internal medicine attendings boarded in geriatric medicine who (along with our fellows) are enthusiastic about mentoring students and residents in the care of this challenging and growing population.

mid right_casting_family-medicine-resident-trainingThrough our ONMM3 Residency, family medicine residents are exposed to the use of advanced osteopathic manipulative techniques in the hospital and outpatient centers.  The Maine Dartmouth Collaborative Care Center provides a holistic approach to patients with chronic diseases and pain.

We were one of the first residencies to pilot a national integrative medicine curriculum which several of our faculty contributed to.  Residents continue to participate in the Integrative Medicine in Residency curriculum; they develop an appreciation of integrative medicine concepts and a basic understanding of many of the complementary techniques that their patients take advantage of.

The Residency has a sports medicine fellowship, started in 2013, which can accommodate two fellows. The Residency’s sports medicine training is particularly strong based on exposure to our fellowship-trained sports medicine faculty as well as community based orthopedic physicians.

Our residents also benefit from strong training in dermatology. Our curriculum features a four-week rotation with faculty in our own dermatology practice as well as lectures and procedural instruction pertaining to treatment of skin conditions.

Our residency has a long-standing history of active involvement in the community. Residents have run for public office and testified at state legislative hearings; physicians and staff regularly volunteer at local service agencies; many of us are members of community arts ensembles and athletic leagues. In collaboration with our patients, we strive to continually reassess our community’s health needs and work to provide services to those who would otherwise go without care. For example, residency faculty offer access to various family planning services in the area, including vasectomy and therapeutic abortion; we have partnered with local dentists and oral surgeons to train our faculty and residents in dental extraction for our uninsured patients; we have active substance abuse treatment programs at both of our residency practice centers.

State-of-the-art regional hospital

Our residents train in obstetrics and inpatient medicine at MaineGeneral Medical Center’s Alfond Center for Health, which opened in the fall of 2013. The hospital features “green” design and construction, and includes state-of-the-art inpatient diagnostic and treatment services, comprehensive outpatient care, single-occupancy patient rooms, and large windows that maximize light and nature views to promote healing. Since we are the only residency in our hospital, Maine-Dartmouth residents have uncommon access to all inpatient resources and services including patients in the ICU, medicine, obstetrics, pediatrics, and other areas.

Commitment to diversity

You might not think that a residency in central Maine would be a picture of diversity; however, a visit to our program will surprise you. Our faculty and residents have lived and worked all over the world, and bring to their role as physicians a variety of customs, values and beliefs. We share differences in race, religion, sexual orientation, and political views which lead to lively conversation at didactics, sign-out, and over dinner or at movie nights. The Residency is clearly a richer and more dynamic community because of this dialogue, and our staff and patients share in the benefit. MDFMR is committed to maintaining a diverse community of learners and to sharing lessons learned about diversity and respect with our colleagues in medicine.

In his book Heirs of General Practice, John McPhee chronicles the founding of our residency at the start of the family practice movement in this country. He paints a picture of a band of motivated physicians with a revolutionary, idealistic, and patient-centered vision of medical care. Though much has changed in medicine in the last 35 years, our residency remains a place where alternative ideas are thoughtfully considered and the impact a physician can have on the life of a family and a community is not underestimated.

We welcome your enthusiasm for family medicine and invite you to learn more about Maine-Dartmouth!  Please feel free to contact us with questions.


Kate Hoffmann, DO
Program Director