University Hospital Medical Center is located at 11100 Euclid Avenue Cleveland.
University Hospital Medical Center is located at 11100 Euclid Avenue Cleveland. Credit: Kenyatta Crisp for Signal Cleveland

University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center is closing its family medicine residency program, which trains medical school graduates or new doctors to care for patients and families from underserved communities.

In an email to program staff sent this week and obtained by Signal Cleveland, officials said the medical center will not recruit new residents for the next academic year but will continue to train those currently enrolled in the program, which is a three-year training and education curriculum at Case Western Reserve University. 

“Family Medicine has changed greatly over the past 20 years,  becoming even more community based and with a much greater focus on outpatient care,” the email says. “As such, the decision has been made by UH senior leadership, Family Medicine leadership and the [Graduate Medical Education] office to close the UH Cleveland Medical Center Family Medicine Residency training program as we pivot to meet the needs of ever-evolving health care and education landscapes.” 

The program’s leadership did not detail reasons for the program’s closure. The hospital describes the program’s mission on its website as one to train future physicians to care for patients from “diverse, powerful, historically marginalized communities challenged by healthcare disparities.” There are currently 42 medical residents enrolled in the the program across its three main campuses, according to the hospital’s website. 

A spokesperson for University Hospitals Medical Center did not respond to a request for comment. The story will be updated when the medical center responds.

The family medicine residency program will continue at two of University Hosptial’s suburban campuses, St. John Medical Center in Westlake and Geauga Medical Center in Chardon, according to the internal email to program staff. The medical students in these programs will do some study and research at the University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center at University Circle before they graduate. 

University Hospitals Medical Center trains more than 1,000 medical residents each year to become physicians at major hospitals and healthcare centers in Northeast Ohio.

This article was updated with the newest number of medical residents enrolled in University Hospitals family medicine residency program.

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Health Reporter (she/her)
Candice, a Cleveland Documenter since 2020, has been a freelance writer whose reporting and digital media work have appeared in The Daily Beast, VICE, Cleveland Magazine and elsewhere. She has written about health, equity and social justice.