UCSF Fresno Celebrates Match Day

While residency training is core to UCSF Fresno’s educational focus, each year, we currently train more than 300 third- and fourth-year medical students, including those in the UC San Joaquin Valley Program in Medical Education (SJV PRIME) on a rotating basis. We are preparing now to expand medical student training at UCSF Fresno.

On March 16, five medical students in the SJV PRIME opened their Match Day envelopes at UCSF Fresno. Congressman Jim Costa and Assembly member Joaquin Arambula joined the celebration.

Match Day is held every year in March and is the time when medical students across the U.S. learn where they will spend the next several years conducting residency training before practicing on their own.

One SJV PRIME student matched with UCSF Fresno, two matched as a couple with UCSF, one matched with UC Davis and another with UCSF-affiliated Santa Rosa Family Medicine.

The UCSF Fresno community gathered the same day as program directors read the names of incoming residents and fellows who will start training at UCSF Fresno this June.

All UCSF Fresno training programs that participated in the Match filled, representing a 100 percent match rate for the eighth year straight. Residency programs received 5,280 applications and conducted 1,057 interviews for 89 positions. Fellowship programs received 1,082 applications during the October/December National Resident Matching Program Match and conducted 165 interviews for 18 positions.

Congratulations to all new residents and fellows! Thanks to staff and faculty for making this year’s recruitment another success.

Using Technology to Improve Medical Education

UCSF Fresno recently held its third annual Education Symposium to highlight excellence in medical education at UCSF Fresno, with an emphasis on how technology is being used to teach future physicians. In her keynote lecture, “MedEd in the Digital Era,” Jessica Mason, MD, clinical instructor of Emergency Medicine at UCSF Fresno, demonstrated how technology is being used to enhance the teaching of medicine in a digitally-connected world.

Each year, UCSF Fresno trains about 300 medical residents (medical school graduates who are training under senior faculty physicians prior to practicing on their own), about 50 medical fellows (physicians who are completing training beyond residency), and more than 300 rotating medical students (students in the process of earning medical degrees).  

“Our goal at UCSF Fresno is to train the next generation of outstanding clinicians and patient advocates,” said Interim Chief of Pediatrics Serena Yang, MD, MPH, a member of the UCSF Fresno Faculty Development Committee, which organized the symposium. “Innovative approaches are needed to train learners capable of anticipating and responding to the ever-expanding base of medical knowledge, evolving health needs of patients and communities, and changes in the health care environment.”

The symposium included hands-on demonstrations of technological approaches in medical education such as online medical procedure videos, podcasts, use of “big data” (large datasets) to improve medical education and patient care, virtual reality, 3D scanning and printing, and digital dashboards.

Technology is transforming medical training and offering new resources to better serve patients. 

UCSF Fresno-CRMC partnership saves lives

Gary Gramenz, PhD, dean of the School of Education at Fresno Pacific University, thought he was getting a cold. When symptoms persisted, he went to his family doctor. Having had pneumonia in the past, he wanted to rule it out. X-rays revealed bilateral pneumonia. He was prescribed antibiotics and went home. Then he took a turn for the worse. 

“The next thing I knew, I woke up in the intensive care unit,” said Dr. Gramenz. That’s when he turned to his significant other Maureen Barrett to explain.

“His symptoms became progressively worse,” said Barrett, a registered nurse. “He was weak. He couldn’t walk and his respiration was labored. I immediately called 911.”

Gramenz was taken to a hospital and was soon transferred to Community Regional Medical Center (CRMC).

“At first, I was concerned about valley fever,” said Mohamed Fayed, MD, a pulmonary and critical care faculty physician at UCSF Fresno and CRMC. “By morning, he wasn’t improving nor responding to the usual management. I knew we had to implement life-saving treatment immediately.” 

An acute case of pneumonia and bleeding in the lungs were causing respiratory failure in Gramenz, making him an ideal candidate for ECMO.

Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation or ECMO, coupled with a special, high-level care medical team, gives patients with life-threatening respiratory or cardiac failure new hope for life. The unique UCSF Fresno-CRMC team launched in Aug. 2016. Timothy Evans, MD, PhD, professor of medicine at UCSF Fresno and medical director of the CRMC medical intensive care units led the effort. The team consists of an intensivist, surgeons, cardiologist, specialized nurses, perfusionist, respiratory therapist and physical therapists.

ECMO works by pumping and oxygenating a patient’s blood outside of their body. Blood is pumped through catheters and oxygenated, taking out carbon dioxide before it is warmed to body temperature and returned to the patient. This allows the organs to rest and heal.

“The program is unique in the Valley because of its accreditation and the medical team’s approach,” said Dr. Fayed. “Physicians and the entire ECMO team provide round-the-clock care.” 

Over the past year and a half, the team has been critical to saving lives.  Gramenz is one of those grateful patients.

“Lots of words come to mind after this experience,” said Gramenz. “Lucky, fortunate, blessed, humbled. Words cannot express my gratitude.” 

Thanks to Team ECMO, Gramenz is looking forward to going home and along the way, satisfying a craving for In-N-Out Burger.

Trauma is the leading cause of death for Americans under age 46, according to a National Academies of Science study. However, many lives can be saved by stopping blood loss.

The UCSF Fresno Department of Surgery and Community Regional Medical Center (CRMC) Trauma Program have teamed up to teach life-saving skills to the public as part of Stop the Bleed, a national initiative launched by the White House in 2015 in response to the Sandy Hook tragedy.

According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Stop the Bleed is intended to cultivate grassroots efforts that encourage bystanders to become trained, equipped, and empowered to help in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives.

Bleeding emergencies are the most amenable to bystander treatment, but time is critical. A person can bleed to death in just three to five minutes. Still, many bleeding deaths can be prevented when quick and proper first-aid treatment is rendered while waiting for professional medical help to arrive.

On March 31, National Stop the Bleed Day, UCSF Fresno and Community Medical Centers offered a free Stop the Bleed training. Nearly 100 people registered for the event.

“The only thing more tragic than a death, is a death that could have been prevented,” said James W. Davis, MD, Steven N. Parks Endowed Chair of Surgery at UCSF Fresno, as he concluded the recent training. “The goal of the UCSF Fresno and Community Regional Medical Center Stop the Bleed collaboration is to train as much of the Fresno area population as possible to recognize and stop bleeding as a result of vehicle accidents, home or work injuries, active-shooter situations and other emergencies to ultimately save lives.” 

The UCSF Fresno Department of Surgery and CRMC Trauma Program have offered more than 70 Stop the Bleed classes and trained nearly 2,000 people to date.

For information, call (559) 459-5130.

UCSF Fresno Research Offers Advanced Treatments

Continuing a seven-year trend, UC San Francisco retained its position as the top public recipient of National Institutes of Health funding. As a branch campus of UCSF, UCSF Fresno is very much focused on research. Medical research conducted at UCSF Fresno brings cutting-edge treatments to Fresno and the San Joaquin Valley.

The UCSF Fresno Clinical Research Center (CRC) is a dedicated research facility inside the UCSF Fresno Center for Medical Education and Research. The CRC employs 20 research staff members who oversee the operation of more than 60 clinical trials currently taking place at UCSF Fresno.

Clinical trials taking place now include:

  • Acute Myeloid Leukemia
  • Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome
  • Asthma
  • B-Cell Lymphoma
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Brain Aneurysm
  • Breast Cancer
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Cirrhosis Coronary Artery Disease
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Community Acquired Pneumonia
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Glioma
  • Heart Failure
  • Hospital Acquired Pneumonia
  • Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD)
  • Intracerebral Hemorrhage
  • Ischemic Stroke
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis (fatty liver disease)
  • Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
  • Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma
  • Panic Disorder
  • Pulmonary Hypertension
  • Renal Cell Carcinoma
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus
  • Sepsis
  • Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury
  • Urothelial Carcinoma
  • Valley Fever

Studies are led by UCSF faculty at UCSF Fresno. Funding is provided by the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Defense, California Office of Health Hazard Assessment, Central California Faculty Medical Group, the David and Marilyn Britz family, the Larry Hillblom Foundation and more than two dozen pharmaceutical and medical device companies.

In addition, UCSF Fresno researchers are conducting local population-based studies, including an NIH-funded study investigating the effects of air pollution on immune cell function in pregnant women and newborns and in the subsequent development of allergies in children, and a separate, Cal EPA-sponsored study on the impacts of environmental chemical exposures during pregnancy (including air, water and food) on prenatal development.

For a complete list of sponsored studies: www.fresno.ucsf.edu/research/clinical-trials

Gifts of Good Health

Gifts of Good Health

Thanks to the following for their support of UCSF Fresno and improved health in the San Joaquin Valley:

  • The Office of Statewide Health and Planning’s Song-Brown Health Care Workforce Training Act awarded $2.15 million over three years to four UCSF Fresno residency programs to expand and train the physician workforce in underserved areas.
  • The California HealthCare Foundation in Oakland, CA, donated $50,000 to support the Doctor’s Academy health professions career pathway program at the UCSF Fresno Latino Center for Medical Education and Research.
  • The Central Valley Community Foundation awarded $80,000 to UCSF Fresno for medical student scholarships and mobile health outreach and medical education training.
  • The Larry L. Hillblom Foundation, Inc., made a gift of $66,500 to sponsor the Multidisciplinary Updates in Internal Medicine Symposium at UCSF Fresno on March 9-10. 
  • The Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund donated $100,000 to support resident wellness at UCSF Fresno.
  • The Leon S. Peters Foundation donated $50,000 for physician wellness and to enhance the educational and research missions at UCSF Fresno.
  • The Britz Family donated $250,000 to UCSF Fresno for lung research.

To support UCSF Fresno’s mission of improving health in the San Joaquin Valley through teaching, patient care, research and community partnerships, email giving@fresno.ucsf.edu, go to http://www.fresno.ucsf.edu/give/ or call (559) 499-6425.

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