Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Novant New Hanover Medical Center to train physicians part of new psychiatric program

Novant Health will train seven psychiatric residents at New Hanover Regional Medical Center beginning June 2024. (Port City Daily/file photo).

WILMINGTON — Novant Health, together with UNC Health, UNC School of Medicine and Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune, is launching a new psychiatric residency program next year.

The four-year program will train seven psychiatric residents beginning in June 2024 physicians to boost the pipeline of much-needed mental health physicians in southeastern North Carolina. The cohort will conduct clinical rotations at both Novant Health New Hanover Medical Center in Wilmington and Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville.  

“We are thrilled that our organizations are able to move forward combining forces for this vital opportunity to train more psychiatrists,” Dr. Joe Pino, senior vice president of medical education for Novant Health, said in a press release. “This new residency will help increase the number of physicians in southeastern North Carolina and serving in the armed forces.”

Psychiatric residents will have training opportunities caring for a variety of patients, including individuals serving in the military, providing firsthand experiences treating conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury.

Despite a growing acknowledgment by a majority of the public and advocacy groups of a nationwide mental health crisis impacting both adults and young people, there is a shortage of psychiatrists and physicians with training in mental health.

“Boosting the numbers of psychiatrists and other trained mental health providers is key to turning the tide on these challenges,” Dr. Samuel Pullen, a psychiatrist and system physician executive for Novant Health’s Psychiatry & Mental Health Institute, said in a press release. “We must increase the numbers of mental health providers so that we can ensure timely access to care is available in all communities we serve.”  

Novant Health recently secured the necessary approval from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education to formally move forward to complete the steps needed to launch the residency program in June 2024.  

In Wilmington, Novant Health already operates medical residency programs for the following specialties: family medicine, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, and general surgery. In addition to the new psychiatric residency, Novant Health will launch a new rural track of our family medicine residency program in July 2024 in partnership with UNC School of Medicine, Novant Health Pender Medical Center and Black River Health Services.

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