MT. PLEASANT, Mich. (WNEM) — Central Michigan University has signed a long-term education agreement with Covenant HealthCare and Ascension St. Mary’s Hospitals.

The organizations signed a 25-year agreement, reaffirming their commitment to graduate medical education.

“This historic agreement provides a sustainable framework for resident education and increases the health care capacity for the region,” said Dr. George Kikano, CMU’s vice president for Health Affairs and dean of the College of Medicine. “Residents in this program learn from highly trained medical professionals and from serving the large and varied population of Saginaw and the 14 other counties they serve.”

Residency is the next step of preparation for a doctor who has graduated from medical college and is training in a focused area of practice.

CMU Medical Education Partners manages 60 faculty-physicians and offers residency programs in emergency medicine, family medicine, general surgery, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, podiatric medicine and surgery, and psychiatry, plus two fellowships in emergency medical services and child and adolescent psychiatry.

Physicians employed by CMU Medical Education Partners are CMU faculty members appointed through the College of Medicine.

“This agreement provides a vision for comprehensive educational programs that will enhance medical services and public health initiatives while providing a pipeline of physicians for the region,” said Dr. Samuel Shaheen, executive director of CMU Medical Education Partners, noting that two-thirds of doctors remain in the regions where they complete their residencies.

CMU’s College of Medicine is one of six fully accredited medical schools in Michigan.

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