Rural Student Physician Program

The Rural Student Physician Program (RSPP) is a rural, community-based, extended clerkship that will immerse selected M-3 year students at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria (UICOM-P) into a comprehensive educational experience in clinical medicine. The program is supported by a grant from the Bureau of Health Professions, Health Resources and Services Administration.
The RSPP is designed to accomplish several purposes. It will provide you with an opportunity to learn clinical medicine in a community-based setting. The program will also integrate your education in pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology, internal medicine, psychiatry, and general surgery within the context of family medicine as an inclusive generalist discipline. We also hope that working, living, and learning in a rural community for 30 weeks will encourage you to seriously consider one of the generalist disciplines as a career. Furthermore, we hope that the experience will encourage more of you to consider practicing in rural communities, particularly those in rural Illinois, as you experience the rewards and opportunities of rural practice while students.
The RSPP incorporates many of the recommendations for medical student education that are advocated by Association of American Medical Colleges, the Council on Graduate Medical Education of the US Department of Health and Human Services, and a Steering Committee composed of representatives from the Society of General Internal Medicine, the Ambulatory Pediatric Association, and the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. Fifteen educational components that are represented in the RSPP and recommended by these organizations include:
1. Well-integrated knowledge of biomedical science;
2. Knowledge, skill, and attitudes that relate to people at various stages in their life cycle;
3. Understanding the biopsychosocial context in which the patient’s health status exists and the ability to obtain information through skillful interviewing;
4. Recognizing multicultural dimensions of healthcare;
5. Managing end-of-life care at all ages; 6. Providing family-oriented care;
7. Understanding and practicing community-oriented, population-based primary care;
8. Emphasizing prevention as a “first principle” of primary care practice;
9. Undergirding all patient care with the ethical principles of medical practice;
10. Applying evidence-based principles to guide patient evaluation and management;
11. Utilizing contemporary information technology for professional development, decision-making and practice management;
12. Developing expertise in the art and science of consultation;
13. Recognizing the needs for patient advocacy;
14. Becoming skilled in the clinical, technical, and procedural skills needed for generalist practice; and
15. Becoming prepared to manage the “business” of contemporary generalist practice, including practice in a managed care environment