Wednesday, 05 August 2015 17:56

Sutter Amador Hospital Partners to Train Potential Rural Physicians

Jackson – Sutter Amador Hospital provided tours of its facility to 10 UC Davis School of Medicine first-year medical students during orientation on Friday, July 24, for the school’s Rural-PRIME program.

The students also toured Sutter Plymouth Health Center, visiting with Dan Fields, M.D., and Sutter Medical Foundation Amador Regional Manager Colleen Riordan, R.N. Anne Platt, CEO, Sutter Amador Hospital, led the tour of Sutter Amador Hospital. Other presentations were provided by Sutter Medical Group Internist Robert Hartmann, M.D., Sutter Medical Foundation, and Maureen Funk from the Amador County Council of Tourism. 

Rural-PRIME (Programs in Medical Education), an innovative UC Davis School of Medicine program, is designed to increase access to health care in rural areas of California. The program produces physician leaders who are trained in and committed to helping California’s medically underserved communities.

Most rural areas around the state face the challenge of recruiting and retaining enough primary care physicians to serve the needs of their communities. Rural-PRIME was specifically developed to address the health care challenges frequently found in less populated or remote areas of the state.

”Our seven-year relationship with Rural-PRIME has familiarized medical students with our patients and communities,” said Dr. Hartmann. “This experience shows them that interesting, quality medical care can take place outside of the big city.”

Students will spend between 4-8 weeks immersed in rural clinical settings, experiencing some of the unique challenges and benefits that only those types of communities can offer.

“We are thrilled to continue this partnership with UC Davis,” said Platt. “Being a training and teaching site for future physicians is a win-win for us. Our physicians and staff get to work with bright medical students who are passionate about health care. In return, these students will experience the unique and special qualities of rural medicine. We think they will find their time here fulfilling, and we are especially hopeful that it will lead them to practice in a rural community some day, maybe even here in Amador County.”

Local Sutter Amador Hospital-affiliated staff members who participate in the Rural-PRIME program as preceptors for the students include: Dan Fields, M.D., family medicine, Sutter Medical Group; Richard Buss, M.D., family medicine; Thomas Bowhay, M.D. family medicine; David Stone, M.D., pediatrics, Sutter Medical Group; Lucy Miller, M.D., radiology; Phil Granchi, M.D. radiology; Paul Beatty, M.D., medical director, Emergency Department, Sutter Amador Hospital, and Robert Hartmann, M.D., internist, Sutter Medical Group. 

About Sutter Amador Hospital

Sutter Amador Hospital is part of Sutter Health, a not-for-profit, community-based health network located throughout Northern California. The hospital’s rich history of Amador County dates back as far as 1876. The facility has 52 licensed beds and is the only hospital in Amador County serving a population of more than 40,000.

For more on the hospital, visit the website at


Photo Caption: UC Davis Medical School students toured Sutter Plymouth Health Center, visiting with Dan Fields, M.D., far left, and Sutter Medical Foundation Amador Regional Manager Colleen Riordan, R.N., center, behind desk.