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More than 260 in Valley join RAHC faculty

On July 1, 24 medical students from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA) will begin their third year of medical education at the Lower Rio Grande Valley Regional Academic Health Center (RAHC) Medical Education Division. The same day, the RAHC's internal medicine residency program begins with four first-year residents and four second-year residents. New medical graduates often pursue residencies during which they specialize in fields such as internal medicine.

These medical students and residents will be mentored by an outstanding group of faculty members from cities throughout the region. "We want to acknowledge all of the physicians and health care professionals in the Valley who are providing such wonderful leadership and opportunities for students to learn, starting July 1," said Leonel Vela, M.D., M.P.H., regional dean in the UTHSCSA School of Medicine. He is providing oversight of the RAHC Medical Education Division and the soon-to-be-built RAHC Medical Research Division in Edinburg.

Valley Baptist Medical Center, Su Clinica Familiar, and many other clinics and offices in the Valley are participating as RAHC clinical sites. "Our students will learn in a very broad array of venues," Dr. Vela said, "and I want to send our appreciation to those who have graciously agreed to accept our students and provide those educational experiences."

The more than 260 RAHC faculty include about 80 in internal medicine and 60 in family practice, about 70 in surgery, 38 in pediatrics, nine in obstetrics and gynecology, and six in psychiatry, according to figures from the RAHC office in Harlingen.

Contact: Will Sansom