A central component of the Feinberg curriculum, the Education-Centered Medical Home (ECMH) program has several major goals: to provide continuous, primary care to underserved and diverse patient populations, to help students better understand the impact of chronic health conditions, and to create longitudinal relationships with faculty mentors for more meaningful assessment and teaching. During each clinical session, first- and second-year students are paired with upperclassmen for each patient encounter, addressing both medical needs and the social determinants of health.
See a video about Feinberg’s ECMH program:
The ECMH program began in 2011 with just 56 students (14 volunteers from each class) at four clinical sites. It has now expanded to include all Feinberg medical students, as well as students in the Physician Assistant (PA) Program. Students work at a total of 40 ECMH sites across Chicago, many of which are located in primary care shortage areas. Feinberg’s ECMHs are located throughout downtown, including Northwestern’s own academic medical campus, and expand to the city’s north, west and south side neighborhoods including Austin, Pilsen and Oakland. It is estimated that two-thirds of all ECMH patients are either underserved, underinsured or medically vulnerable. The ECMH enables students to acquire the skills necessary to influence the quality of care provided and address the social determinants of health in ways that no classroom can approach.