One of only two teaching facilities out of 32 community health centers in Michigan, Hamilton Community Health Network (HCHN) is a non-profit catering to the underserved throughout Genesee County.
The Network has six health clinics including Lapeer County, with the goal to improve health services, regardless of a patient’s ability to pay.
The Hamilton Main Clinic in Flint, offers the three-year Osteopathic Family Medicine Residency Program with additional training through the base hospital, Hurley Medical Center.
The three-year post-doctoral residency-training program began in July of 2014 and is supported through collaboration with a grant from Michigan State University’s College of Osteopathic Health Centers Graduate Medical Education.
David Maldonado and Muhammad Alghanem are new graduates from the Family Medicine Division of the program who say Hamilton’s training has prepared them to support the network’s mission.
The Hamilton Community Health Network’s Residency Graduation and dinner was June 28 at Brick Street Bar & Grill in Grand Blanc.
Hamilton’s CEO Clarence R. Pierce, chief medical officer, Dr. Michael Giacalone, and dental services director Dr. Miriam Parker all offered congratulations.
Maldonado says he has several job offers he’s considering from around the country.
“I am sure it is going to be an urban community because I think it is important to give back…In this time, in this political fervor we are in, it is important to remember that we are in it together,” he says.
In addition to the Family Medicine Residency division’s graduates three students, Dr. Rabia Memon, Dr. Naser Khan, and Dr. Anya Harris graduated from the Dental Residency program.
“The dental residency at Hamilton was one of the best decisions I’ve made,” Memon says. “I remember when I was in high school getting braces and my orthodontist was someone that I really looked up to. It was something that affected my self-esteem and I wanted to be able to do that for other people. That is what led me into dentistry.”
Hamilton’s residency programs are funded by a Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) grant. The goal of programs funded by HRSA is to support family medicine and physicians in underserved communities.
Faculty member Candacy George began her residency at HCHN in 2014 as part of the family physician residency program’s second class. She trained and then stayed.
“Our goal at HCHN is to train residents who are dedicated to work in underserved communities, who understand the needs of these communities and are willing to work toward them,” George says.
“My goal is to empower and educate my patients and I feel Hamilton provides the opportunity for that,” she says. “For example, I had a patient who had barriers to his health care because he had food insecurity. There is no way, if I was working in a private institution, that I could meet the need of this patient. At Hamilton I was able to connect the patient with a community health worker and now they are on the way to better health.”
Pierce says the new graduates represent future assets to Flint and other communities.
“We are extremely proud of the quality of our graduates and wish them success whether they stay on with us or move on to other areas,” Pierce says.
Editor’s Note: To learn more about Hamilton Community Health Network, visit their website or call (810) 406-HCHN (4246)
Photos by Alvin Brown