Elmira/Corning Regional Airport

Arnot Health Partners With Medical College

Arnot Partners With Medical School

Elmira (WENY) -- Today Arnot Health executives announced a new partnership with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, making the medical center a teaching hospital to bring more doctors to the area.

Thirty students have already started working in the system -- which includes three hospitals and more than a 170 providers. Arnot's CEO, Anthony Cooper, said the partnership is designed to make the local health care system stronger, enhance patient experience and head off the doctor shortage.

Cooper said one of the main reasons there's a shortage in doctors is because baby boomers are getting older. But the young people -- meaning medical students -- may help solve the problem.

"We can pretty clearly see where this will be a turning point in our history," said Cooper.

Arnot Health made a landmark decision in partnering with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, or LECOM, to become the newest teaching site for med students, residents and fellows from the nation's largest medical college.

"They seem to have a tendency to prefer primary care, which is what we think is going to be the key to providing medical care in the future," said Cooper. "There is a shortage of primary care physicians in the country."

The medical center's plan is to recruit, teach and retain these future physicians to help ease the shortage of doctors in the area and keep young people in upstate New York.

"Being able to provide services for, well, the people that we grew up around, it's important to do," said third year medical student Sarah Turner.

"Students like to be involved, and obviously, if they can come to this regional institution and do their core rotations, live in the community and work with the teaching physicians, it's a great experience for them as well as the hospital and their patients," said  LECOM President John Ferretti.

Cooper did address the fact that some patients may not want to be part of the teaching program, and he said it's their right to choose.