South Georgia Medical Center and the Valdosta-Lowndes County Chamber hosted a ribbon cutting for SGMC Internal Medicine located at 604 East Park Avenue in Valdosta. SGMC Internal Medicine is part of SGMC’s growing primary care network that serves residents in Lowndes, Lanier, Berrien, and beyond.
This new practice is a component of SGMC’s graduate medical education program in partnership with Mercer University School of Medicine. Medical providers practicing at this location are physicians completing their 3-year internal medicine specialty residency training at SGMC. They include Dr. Rija Chaudhary, Dr. Venkata Gandi, Dr. Priyanka Kalan, Dr. Monica Kovuri, Dr. Dwayne Mohan, Dr. Anum Munir, Dr. Shilpa Reddy, and Dr. Rosaida Silverio-Lopez.
Dr. Joseph Hayes serves as the Medical Director and oversees patient care and clinical skills development for the physicians. When the residency program is fully operational in 2024, there will be 24 physicians rotating through the clinic, each for a three-year term.
SGMC's graduate medical education serves to create a broader pipeline of doctors in rural communities. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, about 20 percent of Americans live in rural areas but barely one-tenth of physicians practice there. Physicians are more likely to locate in the area where they do their training. By offering a residency program in Valdosta, SGMC seeks to increase the number of physicians serving rural areas.
Patients seen by residents experience several advantages in regard to their care. Benefits include being evaluated by a resident physician who is also overseen by a Medical Director and receiving more time with their physician since residents do not yet have an established patient base. Additionally, patients play a vital role in education and training which supports the future of medicine in South Georgia.
Anyone over the age of 18 can call 229-433-5260 to make an appointment at SGMC Internal Medicine at Park Avenue. The clinic is open Monday through Thursday, 8am-5pm and Friday, 8am-noon.