Family Medicine

MDFMR offers a family medicine elective rotation with an outpatient emphasis for fourth year medical students. Students are assigned to either Maine Dartmouth Family Practice in Waterville or the Family Medicine Institute in Augusta and will see ambulatory patients 6-7 half days per week, both mornings and afternoons. Students may admit and care for, under the supervision of the Senior Practice Resident and faculty, any inpatients from the student’s practice during the rotation. A typical day starts at 7:00 a.m. sign out; office practice at MDFP 8:30 to 12:00; conference/lunch 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m.; office practice 1:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.

The outpatient clinic experience is a mix of independent work as well as shadowing residents and faculty preceptors. Students have 2-3 sessions per week in the office with their own schedule of patients and their own preceptor, with responsibilities modeled after a resident practice. Students consistently enjoy this format which allows them to experience continuity of care, bringing patients back in follow-up in their own schedules. One day per week the student will either join the rural health center practice of one of the residency’s part-time family practice preceptors, or participate in some other relevant community practice experience (prenatal clinic, ER, home health care visits, migrant health clinic, etc.).

Students will also cultivate clinical research and evaluation skills, and are expected to do an investigation of some primary care topic like an audit of charts at one of the family practice centers, or a primary care research project. Supervision is provided by clinical faculty.

The specific knowledge areas which will be likely covered are:

  • Prenatal Care
  • Immunization
  • Family Planning
  • Postpartum Care
  • Care of the Newborn
  • Well-child care
  • Acute care for many common illnesses, such as:
    • Otitis Media
    • Upper Respiratory Infections
    • Pharyngitis
    • Lower Respiratory Infections
    • Gastrointestinal Diseases
    • HypertensionUrinary Tract Infections
    • Common Gynecological Problems
  • Chronic care of diseases such as:
    • Hypertension
    • Diabetes
    • Alcoholism
    • Heart Disease
    • Cancer
    • Substance abuse, particularly opiate dependence
  • Preventive medicine including routine physicals.

There will be a significant number of behavioral health problems encountered, both on an acute and chronic basis. There are occasional home and nursing home visits.