Since the closure of Earl K. Long Medical Center in 2013, Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center has become the LSU School of Medicine’s primary graduate medical education site in Baton Rouge.
About 260 medical residents a year train in 25 different programs at the hospital, including six residency programs domiciled here. The growth trajectory of the Lake’s graduate medical education programs has surpassed expectations, especially given that they only got off the ground after Hurricane Katrina shuttered established programs in New Orleans in 2005.
As Business Report details in feature from the current issue, the Lake’s progress in becoming a full-throated teaching hospital was further validated in July when it was selected as one of just eight health care institutions across the country to participate in a four-year project called “Pursuing Excellence in Clinical Learning Environments.”
Created by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the initiative aims to improve how residents are trained in order to ultimately influence outcomes in patient safety and care. The eight sites will conduct pilot projects that could be recommended as best practices nationwide.
The Lake competed against a field of 400 applicants, including long established teaching hospitals. CEO K. Scott Wester believed the hospital had a good shot because it had quickly grown its residency programs while remaining nimble in creating new systems.
“In the last few years, we had looked at the top 20 most recognizable academic medical centers in the country, and I said, ‘I think we can become one of these in the future,’” says Wester. “This project is about eight organizations moving quickly to develop new core curricula to train future physicians, and it’s a great way for us to push our envelope.”
The other hospitals selected were Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C.; Cleveland Clinic Foundation; Maine Medical Center in Portland; Strong Memorial Hospital of the University of Rochester in New York; University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School; University of California San Francisco School of Medicine; and University of Chicago Medical Center.