UNMC Family Medicine Connect

Incoming Advanced Rural Training Students selected for honor society

UNMC inducted its second class of Gold Humanism Honor Society members on April 30, 2016 as 19 third-year medical students, six residents and four members of the faculty were recognized.

Two students entering the 2016-17 Department of Family Medicine Advanced Rural Training Program were among those recognized. Congratulations to Cade Craig and Alexis Erbst for their induction into the society and recognizing the importance of patient-centered care.

Read more about the Gold Humanism Honor Society on UNMC Today.

Congratulations 20-Year Preceptors!

The UNMC Department of Family Medicine would like to recognize the volunteer faculty members who have served as preceptors for 20 years!

Thank you for your dedication and service to the education of UNMC medical students. Your efforts help to support the mission of the university and the Department of Family Medicine.

Patrick A. Hotovy, MD: York Medical Clinic – York, Nebraska
Amy K. Jespersen, MD: Clarkson Family Medicine – Omaha, Nebraska
Kristin K. Johnson, MD: Chadron Medical Clinic – Chadron, Nebraska
Douglas M. Laflan, MD: Avera Medical Group – Creighton, Nebraska
Steve S. Mahnke, MD: Lone Tree Medical Clinic – Central City, Nebraska
Kristine L. McVea, MD: One World Community Health Center – Omaha, Nebraska
Monty Sellon, MD: 23rd Family Medicine – Fremont, Nebraska
Michael G. Skoch, MD: Moscati Health Center – Hastings, Nebraska
Jonathan Stelling, MD: Nebraska City Medical Clinic – Nebraska City, Nebraska
John West, MD: McCook Clinic – McCook, Nebraska
Timothy J. Widhalm, MD: Memorial Health Clinic – Aurora, Nebraska
Jo Ann Witter, MD: Witter Family Medicine Clinic – David City, Nebraska
Gregory N. Woods, MD: York Medical Clinic – York, Nebraska

M4 Presents on Smoking Cessation

The UNMC College of Medicine offers a four-week senior selective course to fourth-year medical students on Nicotine Addiction and Smoking Cessation. Medical student and former Family Medicine Interest Group president, Audra Kennedy, presented her findings on the subject on Wednesday, May 5.

Audra’s “Don’t Light Up: Techniques in Smoking Cessation” presentation highlighted the physical and psychological aspects of addition as well as methods of cessation and best treatments available for smokers.

Audra believes an understanding of the topic is important for her future as a physician.

“I was interested in smoking cessation because it’s an important aspect of patient care, especially in Family Medicine,” she said.

Audra is entering a family medicine residency program in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Department Represents at STFM Conference

The 49th Society of Teacher of Family Medicine Annual Spring Conference was held in Minneapolis from April 30 – May 4. The UNMC Department of Family Medicine was well represented in presenting several presentations and projects.

Oral Presentation:
METRIC Geriatric Preventive Health Template as a Resident Quality Improvement Project
Steven Gale, MD, Timothy Coker, MD

Group Prenatal Care in the Military: A Randomized Controlled Trial
Kirsten Winnie, MD, Amy Feck, MD, Christine Broszko, MD

Colonoscopies in Family Practice
Jeremy King, DO, James Simmons, MD, Toby Free, MD, Mark Goodwin, MD, Deb Zitek, RN

Improving Charting for Well-Child Visits: A Pre-Post Quality Improvement Study
Sabrina Silver, Timothy Coker, MD, Kevin Sisk

Raising the Bar on Resident Scholarly Activity: Impact of an Annual Research Symposium
Jenenne Geske, PhD, Kimberly Jarzynka, MD, Timothy Coker, MD, Birgit Khandalavala, MBBS

Scholarly Topic Roundtable Presentation:
Dealing With Professionalism Issues in a Residency Program
Timothy Coker, MD, Heidi Gaddey, MD, Kimberly Jarzynka, MD

Dr. Thomas McKnight honored at Annual Family Medicine Koefoot Banquet

The Marion D. and Theodore Koefoot, Jr., M.D. Outstanding Preceptor in Rural Family Medicine Award was presented by the University of Nebraska Medical Center Department of Family Medicine at the annual banquet on Wednesday, April 28.

This year’s recipient was Dr. Thomas A. McKnight. Dr. McKnight is an invaluable preceptor practicing at Prairie Fields Family Medicine in Fremont, Nebraska.

“The Department of Family Medicine is proud to recognize Dr. McKnight with the Koefoot Award. He embodies the well-rounded qualities and the commitment to training the next generation of physicians for Nebraska that all of our volunteer preceptors uphold,” Department of Family Medicine Chair Dr. Michael Sitorius said.

The Koefoot Award was created in 2005 in memory of Dr. Theodore Koefoot. He was a charter preceptor for UNMC’s rural family medicine preceptorship. This award is granted to a rural Nebraska family physician who provides outstanding teaching and mentoring of medical students during their Family Medicine rural preceptorship and serves as an outstanding community physician. The award was established through a gift made to the University of Nebraska Foundation by Dr. Koefoot’s wife, Marion, and his family, Gretchen and Nick Vondrak, Sarah and Gary Gernhart, Stephanie and Nicholas Vondrak, and Suzanne and Brad Hansen.

Marion and Dr. Koefoot’s grandchildren Sarah Gernhart, MD, Suzanne Hansen, and Nicholas Vondrak were in attendance to recognize the importance of Family Medicine and acknowledge the influence of a preceptor’s family to the medical student experience.

True to the spirit of family medicine, Dr. McKnight’s wife, Evelyn, has also had an integral part in the next generation of medical students.

“Evelyn has been a gracious host to the many students who have joined our supper table and who lived with us throughout their rotation,” McKnight said.

Dr. McKnight is a 1977 graduate of UNMC along with several members of the Department of Family Medicine. Chair, Dr. Michael Sitorius, his wife Marilyn, Dr. Ivan Abdouch, and Drs. Paul and Audrey Paulman were all in attendance to recognize their classmate.

The highlight of the evening included testimonies from several students who spent their rotations with Dr. McKnight. His impact carries over when students interact with patients in Fremont.

“Working with Dr. McKnight was one of the best experiences I had as a junior medical student.  He leads by example, demonstrating the hard work, compassion and dedication necessary to be a family physician,” third-year medical student James Reinecke said. “He treats medical students with respect and actively involves his junior medical students in designing an assessment and plan, making him a highly effective clinical educator.”

Dr. McKnight is praised for establishing strong connects with his students and viewing them as colleagues.

“Dr. McKnight is an amazing Family Medicine physician and an excellent mentor. He treated me like a peer instead of a medical student from day one,” third-year UNMC medical student Cody Banks said.

The relationship between student and mentor often continues on long after students have left Prairie Fields Family Medicine.

“Patients still ask me about students, years after they have graduated,” McKnight said. “Many more than one hundred students I have mentored over my career have become my lifelong friends.”

Dr. McKnight has given countless hours to the education of UNMC medical students. But after 35 years, it is he who is most gracious.

“For all these many gratifying experiences, I thank the students who have spent precious months of their four years of medical school with me. I thank the Department of Family Medicine for their confidence in me. Our work is not done, and I am eager to continue to mentor the next generation of family physicians,” he said.

Several other medical students were also recognized by the department. Blake Cover received the James L. Leahy Award, given to an outstanding senior medical student who will enter the Family Medicine House Officer program at this medical center. Kaitlin Hahn, received the Fay Smith award given to a graduating UNMC medical student who has completed a family medicine clerkship and who will be entering a family medicine residency program. Weston Keller received the Rodney A. Sitorius, MD, and Virginia H. Sitorius Scholarship while Matthew Stephany was the recipient of the Audrey and Paul Paulman Scholarship.