New Neurology Residency Program Receives ACGME Accreditation and THEB Funding

New Neurology Residency Program Receives ACGME Accreditation and THEB Funding

The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) El Paso Department of Neurology has obtained a full three-year residency accreditation from the Neurology Residency Review Committee of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) beginning July 2015. This is the first residency program in neurology in the El Paso region.

“We are very happy. This is another step forward in fulfilling the vision of the department by increasing access to neurological care and becoming a place to train future neurologists and hopefully nurture some of them to stay in the region after finishing training,” said Salvador Cruz-Flores, M.D., professor and chair of the Department of Neurology.

“The approval of this residency program not only expands the options our institution provides in graduate medical education, but more importantly effects a direct impact on the severe physician shortage of our community,” said associate dean for Graduate Medical Education, TTUHSC El Paso, Armando Meza, M.D.

In addition to the accreditation, the TTUHSC El Paso Departments of Neurology and Obstetrics and Gynecology were also recently awarded a Resident Expansion Grant from the Texas Higher Education Board (THEB) to assist with resident funding. The program directors for both departments respectively are Paisith Piriyawat, M.D., and Melissa Mendez, M.D. The departments were fully funded towards resident compensation for a total of two years beginning April 1, 2015. Neurology was funded for up to 10 slots and Obstetrics and Gynecology for three slots for the entire funding period.

Veronica Mallett, M.D., professor and chair of the Department of OB/GYN, said continued funding from the THEB is integral to their mission to provide the highest quality resident training experiences in obstetrics and gynecology. “Expanding the availability of graduate medical education positions in our region is crucial to the continued success and development of residency programs at TTUHSC El Paso,“ she said.

“We are extremely excited to continue our partnership with the THEB,” said Dr. Mendez.

“The agency’s confidence in our program is mirrored in our dedication to expand residency training opportunities which increases system capacity. Funding will allow us to train more resident physicians to serve the needs of this medically underserved population,” she added.

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