The impact of the state of Georgia's only public medical school spans from its founding nearly 200 years ago, in 1828, as one of the nation's first medical schools to its current role optimizing health care in Georgia and beyond through education, discovery and service.
The Medical College of Georgia educational experience is anchored by the main campus in Augusta as well as regional clinical campuses for third- and fourth-year students and a second four-year campus in Athens in partnership with the University of Georgia. The state’s medical school also offers clinical training in more than 350 sites across the state providing students experience in the full spectrum of medicine, from tertiary/quaternary care hospitals to small-town solo practices. MCG and its teaching hospitals provide postgraduate education to more than 500 residents in 51 different programs.
Our researchers and clinicians focus on illnesses that affect most of Georgia and America’s children and adults, including cardiovascular biology and disease, cancer, neurosciences and behavioral sciences, public and preventive health, regenerative and reparative medicine, personalized medicine and genomics. Our clinical faculty also share their expertise with physicians and patients at about 80 clinics and hospitals statewide.
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The problem is complex, but the math is simple — and the state’s public medical school hopes it equals more primary care doctors for underserved Georgia.
Eighty-nine of Georgia’s 159 counties are designated Primary Care Health Professional Shortage Areas by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration. That means there aren’t enough doctors to treat the people living there or near there; the numbers of women lost to pregnancy-related deaths and babies who die before their first birthdays are higher than average; and the people who live there are poor — living 100 percent or more below the federal poverty level.
About 3.2 million Georgians live in a designated shortage area and the state would need 672 new doctors to move to those areas to alleviate the current deficit, according to research by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
To help reduce the problem, MCG is proposing a new curriculum that it hopes will ensure the areas of the state that need new doctors the most get them.