Family medicine obstetrics fellowship to start this summer

Posted on February 9, 2022 by Brittany Otis
Brittany Otis

A new fellowship will train family medicine physicians to provide more obstetrics care in underserved areas of Alabama. data-lightbox='featured'
A new fellowship will train family medicine physicians to provide more obstetrics care in underserved areas of Alabama.Download larger image

Beginning in July 2022, USA Health’s Department of Family Medicine will implement a new program aimed at providing more obstetrics care to residents in rural and urban areas in Alabama where prenatal care often is nonexistent.  

The family medicine obstetrics fellowship is a one-year training program for family medicine physicians. The fellowship provides trainees with a tailored and comprehensive educational experience. Fellows will receive instruction on obstetric ultrasounds, Cesarean sections, prenatal care including high-risk pregnancies, gynecological procedures and telehealth. It is funded by the federal government through the Health Resources and Services Administration.

Two fellows will be accepted each year from nationally accredited residency programs in family medicine.  

“Students interested in rural medicine will have an opportunity to receive the training closer to home, and they will have the opportunity to help patients in the region,” said Allen Perkins, M.D., M.P.H., chair of family medicine at the USA College of Medicine and a family medicine physician at USA Health. “The patients will benefit the most. This program will bring prenatal care to a county that may have never had prenatal care. It will bring virtual access to patients who need high-risk maternity care who may not have reliable transportation to get to Mobile. Hopefully, it will help to reduce both maternal and infant mortality in lower Alabama.”

Historically, Alabama has ranked among the worst in the United States for poor pregnancy outcomes, including infant death within the first year of life. 

The new fellowship program will give family medicine physicians additional skills to deliver care to those who otherwise might not receive it to improve health outcomes. 

While thoroughly patient-centered, the fellowship provides a rich context of academic medicine. USA Health is the only academic health system in lower Alabama and includes Children’s & Women’s Hospital, which has the only level III neonatal intensive care unit in the area and University Hospital, which has a level I trauma center. The health system also offers stroke, sickle cell and burn centers for the entire northern Gulf Coast.

Other program highlights include: 

  • Affiliations with Children’s & Women’s Hospital, with 2,500 deliveries per year, and Monroe County Hospital, a rural hospital with a labor unit and approximately 300 deliveries per year 
  • Community-based collaboration with Evergreen Family Medical, a branch of Franklin Primary Health Center, to deliver prenatal care to residents of Conecuh County
  • Dedicated family medicine and OB/GYN faculty who are accessible and committed to education, providing both clinical supervision and expertise, plus rewarding mentorship

For more information about the program, email Jenna James at

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