UW News

May 12, 1998

University of Washington receives another Gold Award from American Academy of Family Physicians

UW Health Sciences/UW Medicine

The University of Washington (UW) was one of seven medical schools in the nation to maintain a three-year average of more than 30 percent of its graduates entering family practice residencies from 1995 through 1997. In recognition, the American Academy of Family Physicians presented the seven medical schools with Gold Awards, as part of its seventh annual “Family Practice Percentage Awards.”

The University of Washington’s average was 31 percent, with a record 35.1 percent set in 1996.

Other medical schools receiving Gold Awards were the University of South Dakota School of Medicine, University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Minnesota School of Medicine – Minneapolis, Wright State University School of Medicine, University of Iowa School of Medicine, and East Tennessee State University James H. Quillen College of Medicine. Thirty-nine medical schools received Silver or Bronze Awards for their family practice residency entry rates. The honors were conferred in Chicago at the recent conference of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine.

This is the University of Washington’s second Gold Award. It received the same honor last year.

Dr. Kathleen Ellsbury, associate professor of family medicine who served as her department’s head of medical student education from 1995-97, said, “This award recognizes the invaluable contributions of many people at the UW and throughout the region. They include family physicians in the community who train medical students; representatives from other basic science and clinical disciplines who encourage students interested in family medicine; and the legislators, professional academies and many others who support the medical school’s efforts in this area.”

For the past five years, the UW has been ranked No. 1 in the United States for the quality of its teaching of family medicine in U.S. News & World Report’s annual graduate and professional school ratings. The rankings are based on a reputational survey of the country’s medical school deans, senior medical school faculty and residency program directors. In the same five-year survey period, the UW also ranked consistently as the country’s leading primary-care medical school.

The UW is regarded as a national model of community-based, primary-care education with links between distant rural physicians, regional health centers, nearby community physicians and a university academic medical center. These links are important in meeting the health-care and physician training needs of a five-state region.

The American Academy of Family Physicians is a national medical association representing more than 85,000 family physicians, family practice residents and medical students interested in family medicine. Family physicians are medical specialists trained in the diagnosis and treatment of the majority of medical problems. Family physicians care for people of all ages and both genders.

The Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, founded in 1967, is an academic organization committed to enhancing and improving the quality of education in family practice.