Medical student clinics: the basis for a clerkship in family practice

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In this paper, the authors describe a popular elective clerkship in family practice a Community Hospital, Santa Rosa, California. The key element in the clerkship for the past six years has been the student's General Medical Clinic. Here, under the supervision of a family physician teacher, senior medical students care for patients with a wide variety of problems. The students work as a team with family nurse practitioners. The clinic has succeeded in offering patients an alternative to the emergency room and an entrance to the hospital's Model Family Practice Center. The students give the clerkship a very high rating as an educational experience. It has also been viable economically.

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