Dr. Dan Otero, HMS CEO, announced on Friday that at the recommendation of the current program General Medical Education Committee (GMEC), the HMS Family Medicine Residency Program will need to close, at least temporarily. To effectively run a residency program, at minimum it requires a Program Director and a Core Faculty. Since the program's inception, the program had transitioned through six faculty. When Dr. Darrick Nelson resigned on February 8, 2022, as the Program Director and Designated Institutional Officers (DIO), an immediate national search for permanent faculty ensued and interim faculty were located and assigned.
HMS expresses sincere thanks to these interim individuals who filled faculty positions within the residency program. Dr. Oliver Hayes served as the DIO, Dr. John Andazola served as the Program Director (PD), and Dr. Salvador Adame-Zambrano, served as the Associate Program Director (APD). Additionally, Dr. Pedro Armendariz and Dr. Teresa Arizaga served as a part-time faculty.
HMS was hopeful that during the search period that permanent Family Medicine Board Certified physicians could be hired, but with significant healthcare shortages nationwide, recruitment efforts were unsuccessful, leading to the difficult decision of closing the program. The final closing date will be the last business day in August with program continuing until then. Each of the current three residents will be offered positions at other regional or national residency programs so they can continue their education and may depart the program before the closing date.
Dr. Otero went on to say that the HMS Board of Directors and Leadership Team are disappointed that that this difficult decision had to be made, especially considering that this is the third family medicine residency program to close in recent months in New Mexico. Being recognized by HRSA as the first Teaching Health Center in New Mexico and with over nine years of serving as a frontier and rural training hub welcoming two residents per academic year, it is a difficult decision. However, HMS intends to keep its accreditation and status as an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Sponsoring Institution. This continued accreditation will provide HMS the opportunity to reestablish the residency program in the future, if the organization is able to recruit the needed faculty.
Dr. Otero has requested that if anyone in the community has any questions, to please contact him directly at 575-542-2322 or at email@example.com.