Monday, August 15, 2022

Family Medicine Residency Named for Frackville Couple


Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)–Schuylkill’s Rural Family Medicine Residency program has a new name, the Walter and Irene Baran Schuylkill Family Medicine Residency Program, thanks to the generosity of their son Tony and his wife Sandy Baran.

The Schuylkill Rural Family Medicine Residency Program was announced in 2019 when the federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) awarded LVH–Schuylkill a Rural Residency Planning and Development Program (RRPD) grant to help launch the program. LVH–Schuylkill was the only facility in Pennsylvania to be included in the awards.

Since that time, LVH–Schuylkill and Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) have secured leadership, faculty, facilities and earlier this summer, welcomed its first group of residents, who now see patients in the hospital and clinic setting.

“My parents were very generous and helped many people and supported many causes in our area, much of it anonymously,” said Tony Baran. “They were proud residents of Schuylkill County and always optimistic about its future. This is our way to honor them.”

Schuylkill County has some of the highest rates of heart disease and cancer in Pennsylvania. Like many communities throughout the nation, it is experiencing an aging physician population and seeing some providers retiring or relocating. The need for additional practitioners in our community is great.

“Having access to world-class, specialized care begins in the primary care setting,” said William “Bill” Reppy, President, LVH–Schuylkill. “Since LVHN increased its presence in Schuylkill County nearly six years ago, we have been successful in bringing additional primary care providers and specialists to this community, but more needs to be done.”

LVH–Schuylkill welcomed its first four residents in late June. These physicians are now seeing patients in clinics and practices throughout Schuylkill County as well as in the hospital. Their

residency lasts three years. Next June, four additional physicians will join the team. When enrollment is full, there will be 12 family medicine residents in Schuylkill County seeing patients and delivering care. The goal is to provide opportunity for these physicians to continue practicing in our region upon completion of the residency program.

“This is a very important program that will produce tangible results,” said Terry Purcell, President of the LVHN Northwest Region. “It will help develop the future of health care in our region and allow us to take a giant step forward in delivering convenient access to care to those we serve.”

Submitted Story and Photo

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