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Jersey City Medical Center to Start Fellowship in Gastroenterology

Dr. Michael Loftus
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Dr. Michael Loftus

Jersey City Medical Center, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, is becoming a major teaching affiliate site to train tomorrows’ gastroenterologists as it joins the Rutgers Health/New Jersey Medical School Gastroenterology fellowship for young doctors to receive advanced training in gastroenterology.

Jersey City Medical Center has long been an academic teaching hospital, offering residencies in internal medicine, dental medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, and pharmacy, but the fellowship training in gastroenterology is a first for the hospital.

“This is a great step forward for Jersey City Medical Center and patients in the region,” said Michael Loftus, MD, MBA, the chief medical officer of Jersey City Medical Center. “We are an academic medical center with residents in many specialties and having fellows is the next level of training.”

Dr. Loftus said Jersey City Medical Center patients will benefit from the fellowship by having access to doctors who are learning the newest techniques from some of the most experienced and accomplished gastroenterologists in New Jersey.

The gastroenterology fellowship at Jersey City Medical Center is an outgrowth of a 2018 partnership between RWJBarnabas Health and Rutgers University designed to enhance research and medical and health professional education, improve access to care, and reduce health disparities in New Jersey.

As a result of the partnership, all graduate medical education programs at Rutgers have been consolidated into Rutgers Health, which now has more than 140 different training programs with 1,500 residents and fellows across the state. It is the fifth largest sponsor of graduate medical education in the nation.

“We are creating a new academic health system that brings together the enormous clinical strength of RWJBarnabas Health with the educational and research excellence at Rutgers University,” said Neil Kothari, MD, the associate dean for Graduate Medical Education at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. “Together, we are driving transformative healthcare forward through our collaboration.”

Starting in July, two additional fellowship positions will be added to the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School Gastroenterology program, and fellows will begin rotating through Jersey City Medical Center. One of the new positions created will be dedicated to research, while the other will be clinical.

Dr. Kothari said Jersey City Medical Center will offer fellows experiences that they will not experience at the other facilities.

“Jersey City has one of the most diverse populations in the state and we believe that incredible demographic will really help to broaden the range of clinical diseases that the fellows in gastroenterology will be able to see,” Dr. Kothari said. “It will also enhance their training in cultural diversity.”

Dr. Kothari said having fellows at a hospital result in better clinical care.

“Everything that gets done must be evidence-based,” Kothari said. “The hospital needs to have the latest in technology and the latest in clinical care techniques. This is going to be a blockbuster program. We’re excited for all the things that we’re going to be able to do together.”

Loftus said the partnership with Rutgers has provided opportunities for the hospital to create advanced training programs recognized by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

“Jersey City Medical Center is committed to advancing medical knowledge in partnership with the Rutgers team,” Loftus said. “We are committed to training doctors to not only deliver excellent clinical care, but to the research that will lead to tomorrow’s interventions.”

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