HRMC Hosts Rural Experiences for Health Professions Students from USD
August 01, 2022
For the second time this summer, Huron Regional Medical Center welcomed Rural Experiences for Health Professions Students (REHPS) to their organization. HRMC has been a rotation site for five years. Bailley Schneider and Christina Burmeister were the most recent REHPS students on rotation at HRMC.
Schneider is from Chester, SD, and will graduate with a Master of Science in Physician Assistant studies in 2022 from the University of South Dakota (USD). Burmeister is from Huron and is in her second year of working toward her Doctorate in Physical Therapy at USD.
While in Huron, Schneider and Burmeister spent the majority of their time in their respective fields of study as they are both completing required clinical rotations, however, they also had the opportunity to work in various areas of the hospital. Schneider, a PA student, had the opportunity to work with physical therapy in inpatient and outpatient settings as well as wound care. Burmeister had the opportunity to shadow a primary care provider, spend time in the radiology department and observe a total knee replacement. Both students also experienced case management work at Community Counseling’s Individualized and Mobile Program of Assertive Community Treatment (IMPACT) program. The students expressed appreciation for additional experiences outside of their core study areas.
“We’ve both been challenged immensely while in Huron and have been given the opportunity to learn a lot,” explained Schneider. “Huron has been a wonderful site; the staff, providers and everyone has been welcoming.”
In addition to experiences in the hospital, the students created health education materials to be distributed in the community, which satisfies one of the requirements of the REHPS program. Schneider and Burmeister have completed their REHPS experience and will close out the final portions of their USD clinical rotations at HRMC in the upcoming weeks.
“It has been great to see all of the different services and careers that are offered in Huron,” remarked Burmeister. “We all have to work together to be able to help people in a rural community and the surrounding communities.”
Huron is one of 11 South Dakota communities, with populations under 14,000, selected to participate in Rural Experiences for Health Professions Students (REHPS). The program is designed to bring health professions graduates, who are selected through a competitive process, to rural South Dakota for rewarding careers.
The 2022 REHPS communities are: Britton, Canton, Chamberlain, Custer, Faulkton, Huron, Martin, Parkston, Platte, Redfield, Scotland, Tyndall and Winner. The REHPS program connects interprofessional groups of students enrolled in clinical psychology, family nurse practitioner, medical, medical laboratory science, occupational therapy, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant and registered nursing programs at Dakota Wesleyan University, Presentation College, SDSU and USD.
“When selecting a site to host REHPS students, we look for a facility interested in the education of health professions students along with an understanding of the importance of giving them a first-hand look at how rewarding a career in rural medicine can be. The team at Huron Regional has provided all of our students a first-rate experience,” said Cheri Buffington, REHPS Program Director.
REHPS receives funding from the Office of Rural Health/South Dakota Department of Health and is managed by the Southeast South Dakota Area Health Education Center.
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