13:46 PM

St. Vincent Healthcare Welcomes Surgical Residents for Training

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Dr. Michael Wilcox, Director of the Residency Program at St. Vincent, and Dr. Briana Britton, Surgical Resident

St. Vincent Healthcare, now part of Intermountain Health, has welcomed its first surgical resident for medical training in Billings in partnership with its sister facility Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver, Colorado. 

As a new integrated site for residents that are part of the Saint Joseph Hospital surgical residency program, it is anticipated that six physicians will come to St. Vincent for elective month-long rotations in 2023. Residents will be practicing and training alongside St. Vincent surgeons in trauma, general and robotic surgery as well as other subspecialties. 

By bringing residents to Montana, the program hopes to further medical education in Montana with an eye on recruiting new surgeons to the state.   

“We know that physicians choosing to be part of our program are interested in training and serving rural America,” said Dr. Michael Wilcox, director of the residency program at St. Vincent. “We hope that through this program, we can create a potential pipeline for the future surgeons serving Montana by giving them exposure to the excellent, patient-centered care we provide.” 

“It has been a passion of mine personally, and a priority of our program, to add a track with a focus on training in rural communities,” said Dr. Jason Johnson, director of the Saint Joseph Residency program. “The need for access to high-quality surgical care in our rural communities is great, and we believe this new partnership will help us bring more surgeons to live and work in Montana.” 

Additionally, there are plans for full-time surgical residents to spend the second half of their five-year residency in Montana in the coming years. St. Vincent anticipates the first full-time resident will be on-site in late 2025. Once the program is established, St. Vincent expects to have two to three residents at the hospital. Saint Joseph and St. Vincent will add five additional resident positions to the program through the partnership. St. Vincent providers and program leaders will actively participate in selecting the residents. 

Dr. Briana Britton, the first surgical resident to come to St. Vincent as part of the program, shared her excitement about the opportunity because of the breadth of experience that it provides. “As a trauma or general surgeon in a rural area, you get exposure to a wide range of patients and cases. In larger cities, surgeons tend to be much more specialized. This is a unique experience.”