Lake City Medical Center
July 31, 2019

Lake City, Fl, – Lake City is welcoming a cohort of three medical school students from the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM). This is the first group of students at Lake City Medical Center from ACOM with the facility vision of fostering a pipeline of physicians to care for the community inside and out of the hospital. 

The Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine is located in Dothan, Alabama, and was chartered in 2013 to meet the needs of physician shortages in Alabama and the Southeast region with particular emphasis on primary care.  Lake City Medical Center has partnered with ACOM to provide clinical training and experiences within the community for third and fourth year medical students.  This program will start July 29, 2019 with three students who will train in the fields of primary care, surgery, behavioral medicine, pediatrics, hospice and OB/GYN as well as other specialties. In providing these students to LCMC, ACOM is expanding the partnership they have with HCA Healthcare to include Lake City Medical Center to a growing list of facilities which they have previously partnered with. 

The Florida Department of Health produced Columbia County Health Assessment 2019 identified that while our area had increased recently to 140.1 physicians per 100,000 population they are significantly lower than the state rate (roughly 45% of state rate). The introduction of medical students at Lake City Medical Center will expose Columbia County as a potential site for young physicians to enter the workforce and apply their needed trade.

“I am extremely excited to have these students learning from the high quality physicians and medical professionals at Lake City Medical Center and in our area. These students will finish their clinical rotation in a learning environment here in Lake City, then pick a field of medicine to continue their education through a residency program. These residency programs can range from primary care to surgical services. As they continue their education, I want them to look back at their time spent here at Lake City Medical Center and remember the expertise and the dedication to improve human life that our staff and physicians provide daily to our community.” Rick Naegler, LCMC CEO,“This represents a significant step to creating a physician pipeline into our area, which is not only crucial for community development, but in improving any disparity in identified health statistics between Columbia County and the rest of Florida. In developing a sustainable network of care we continue to commit to the care and improvement of human life.”