The Division of General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics, with over fifty clinical and research faculty, is committed to enhance and support the mission of the Medical University of South Carolina in the domains of education, patient care, research and healthcare leadership development. The Division accomplishes this mission by providing exemplary patient care and maintaining an environment conducive to academic excellence in education and research.
The Division of General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics plays a major role in educating and training the next generation of Internal Medicine physicians, supporting a large proportion of inpatient and outpatient clinical experience, and mentoring students and residents in clinical research, quality and safety. Our goal is to teach high quality evidence-based care across all clinical venues. The Division’s teaching excellence is well established and we have been named the Department of Medicine Division of the Year by the residents 10 of the last 12 years. A large number of faculty are acknowledged Master Educators and play a major role in early clinical training in the College of Medicine. In post-graduate training, our two year HRSA funded Generalist Faculty Development Fellowship program provides superb preparation for a career in academic medicine and includes a Master of Science in Clinical Research. Every spring the division also sponsors the Annual Update in Primary Care General Internal Medicine Conference in historic downtown Charleston.
Primary care General Internal Medicine: Our primary care resident and faculty practice, University Internal Medicine, is located on the 8th floor of Rutledge Tower and the division has a community-based practice at MUSC Health East location in Mount Pleasant. Both practices are NCQA accredited Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH). A PCMH is a team-based model of care led by a personal physician who provides continuous and coordinated care throughout a patient's lifetime to maximize health outcomes. This care model promotes improved access and communication; care coordination and integration; and care quality and safety; preventive services; treatment of acute and chronic illness; and assistance planning end-of-life care. We have developed interprofessional teams within these practices to more fully address the entire spectrum of medical needs of primary care and aging patients to improve outcomes and quality of life. The transformation of our University Internal Medicine and Health East Internal Medicine practices to PCMH is allowing us to provide a much more personalized level of care based on individual patient needs.
Geriatrics: With an ever-growing geriatric population in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, the Division has expanded its focus on Geriatric teaching, patient care, and research to help our seniors to age with dignity. Drs. Mark Newbrough (section head) and Amanda Overstreet are joining the Division in 2016, and will see outpatients in UIM and staff a post-operative Geriatric consul One example is our “Aging Q3” project (Quality Education, Quality Care, and Quality of Life), a $2M grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation’s Aging and Quality of Life program to train medical students, residents, and practicing physicians using educational and practice-based strategies. The wave of aging baby boomers will engulf South Carolina in the next decade and since the training of physicians takes seven or more years, our Internal Medicine physicians now need more training in the management of Geriatric syndromes that are prevalent as people age, such as falls, poly-pharmacy and dementia. Aging Q3 is an education and practice-based program to improve resident physician clinical competencies in Geriatrics and in turn improve the quality of care and of life for older adults.
Hospitalist Medicine: The Division staffs five teaching and four non-teaching inpatient services located in the Main Hospital and the Ashley River Tower. Our large and growing group of hospitalist physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants also staff the General Internal Medicine consult service, preoperative clinics and support perioperative medical co-management services as well as supervising care in our transitional care management service. In addition, our hospitalists champion changes throughout the hospital system to improve the experience and care of our patients.
Palliative Care: The mission of the Palliative Care Program of the Medical University of South Carolina, (MUSC), is to restore and maintain the quality of life for persons with serious illness and their families through the multidisciplinary delivery of expert symptom management and palliative care. This mission is based on the conviction that the symptoms, pain and suffering that may be associated with serious illness should be addressed and relieved in every manner possible, with the goal of improving quality of life for both the patient and family. As the Program strives to deliver its mission and vision, it is aligned with and guided by the mission and values of MUSC.
The palliative care program within MUSC cares for patients of all ages as well as their families. An outpatient palliative care clinic is established in Holling’s Cancer Center. The Program teaches health care providers throughout this institution and beyond. The program is also active in research having obtained grants from the Duke Foundation, the Cambria Foundation as well as others.
Division research faculty members, conducted at highest scientific standards, targets research areas such health care disparities, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, access to care of underserved populations, aging and geriatric care, professional education, and medical informatics. Clinical and Health Services research is conducted in collaboration with faculty of the Department of Public Health Sciences, College of Medicine, the College of Nursing, SC College of Pharmacy, College of Health Professions, and the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center. The Center for Health Disparities Research directed by Leonard Egede, MD, MS, brings together core faculty from several MUSC Colleges to develop clinical research infrastructure and enhance MUSC competitiveness in obtaining extramural research support in health disparities research. The Center emphasizes collaborative research to build bridges across colleges on campus and across institutions within the state of South Carolina. Research within the Center focuses on three main areas including: 1) primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention of chronic diseases in diverse populations; 2) interventions at the patient, provider, and health systems levels to reduce or eliminate racial/ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic differences in quality of care and health outcomes; and 3) novel interventions to improve health care delivery and health outcomes for rural dwelling residents.