Plastic Surgery

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Grand Rapids Medical Education Partners (GRMEP) is a partnership between Spectrum Health, Mercy Health Saint Mary's Health Care, Grand Valley State University, and Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. These institutions are clinical and academic leaders driving the future of health care and education in Grand Rapids and throughout the region. GRMEP coordinates all graduate medical education in the city and surrounding area. Michigan State University College of Human Medicine is the plastic surgery residency's academic affiliation. Michigan State medical students rotate on our clinical services and participate in research with us. All plastic surgery faculty members hold academic appointments in MSU-CHM, and residents are recognized as MSU resident clinical educators. We are unique in that while affiliated with a large medical school, our program is not part of a hierarchical academic department. It is through this relationship that we are able to offer the very best of a busy community-based clinical program as well as the academic opportunities of a university. This is demonstrated by early and extensive operative experience coupled with the substantial research projects, presentations, and papers generated by our residents annually.

Grand Rapids is recognized as one of the early major centers of plastic surgery in the United States, with a legacy extending back 90 years. Physicians were first trained here under preceptor, Ferris Smith, MD, beginning in 1920. In 1963, the Blodgett Memorial Hospital Plastic Surgery Residency was one of 53 approved residency programs and 12 approved preceptorships listed and approved by the Residency Review Committee for Plastic Surgery. In March 2009, Ronald D. Ford, MD was appointed as only the fourth Program Director in our long distinguished history.

In May 2011, we received ACGME RC for Plastic Surgery approval for a new six-year integrated plastic and reconstructive surgery residency. Applicants are recruited and matched directly from medical school into the Plastic Surgery Residency Program. Successful completion of our program qualifies the resident for examination by The American Board of Plastic Surgery, Inc.

Three acute care teaching hospitals participate in this residency: Mercy Health Saint Mary's Health Care, Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital and Spectrum Health Blodgett Hospital. All plastic surgery and hand surgery call is home-call and fed through the Emergency Department, so you will be exposed to a wide variety of cases including trauma, burn, lower & upper extremity, and craniomaxillofacial injuries. Residents also rotate at three accredited, office-based surgery centers that provide ambulatory and cosmetic plastic surgery training. In the PGY-3 year, residents participate in a week-long microsurgery course and a short oral maxillofacial skills course; a chief clinic experience is provided in the PGY-6 year.

Program faculty members serve, both in their offices and in surgery, as clinical coordinators and mentors for residents. The educational atmosphere fosters a personal, yet team-oriented learning experience where residents are respected and appreciated. For motivated residents, the possibilities are endless.

Our program possesses an outstanding board pass rate, and our residents routinely secure exceptional fellowships such as the Cleveland Clinic; Buncke Clinic in San Francisco; Manhattan Eye, Ear, and Throat Hospital; Medical College of Wisconsin Hand Surgery Fellowship; Mayo Clinic Microsurgery; and the San Antonio Hand Surgery Fellowship. We believe this demonstrates the effectiveness of our residency program; a program where alumni enthusiastically refer applicants.

GRMEP/MSU Plastic Surgery Residency is one of the most unique and exciting training programs in the nation - combining excellence, professionalism, and balance. We are committed to providing you with the variety, experience, academics, and support systems to help you take the next step in your education and career with confidence. We invite you to see for yourself.

Applications are accepted via ERAS with a December 1, 2011 deadline. For additional information, please contact the Program Coordinator at 616.391.1909 or e-mail: