After medical-school graduation, doctors move on to residency training — additional, advanced years of training in which they learn a chosen specialty such as surgery or radiology. Residency provides another opportunity for WWAMI to encourage doctors to practice in the Northwest. There are 18 family medicine residency programs in WWAMI that educate more than 400 residents; in addition, there are residency positions for internal medicine, obstetrics-gynecology and pediatrics, as well as training opportunities for psychiatry in Spokane and Boise. These graduate medical education programs are vital to the future of healthcare in WWAMI; statistics show that doctors like Lanae Miner and Moe Hagman, featured below, are most likely to settle in or near their residency training location.

Lanae K. Miner, M.D. ’09
Pediatrics resident at Seattle Children’s

Where did you grow up?
Snohomish, Wash. “There was one high school and three stoplights.”

What was it like working in WWAMI communities as a student?
Eye-opening. “I worked with a family medicine preceptor in White Salmon, Wash., as part of the R/UOP program in medical school. We’d be in clinic during the day, then we’d go to a nursing home to do rounds at lunch. In the morning or the evening, we’d go to the hospital to see newborns and patients referred by the clinic. It was my first exposure to what practicing medicine would be like if I were more than 30 minutes away from a big city.”

Talk about your residency experience.
Diversity. “I spend a lot of time at Seattle Children’s, but I rotate through Harborview Medical Center and UW Medical Center. Residents are also required to spend two months at a site outside Seattle. I went to Yakima. When I was working at the community hospital, I learned that the resources were more limited than they are at Children’s. You have to anticipate in those situations — to take stock of the interventions you can provide, and figure out whether you can provide them, or if you should transfer the patient.”

Where do you want to practice medicine?
Washington. “Washington is my home, and I love it here! I’m hoping to stay in the Pacific Northwest.”

Final words on WWAMI?
Gratitude. “I could not be where I am today were it not for the physicians throughout WWAMI who opened their offices and shared their patients with me. They have provided me with immeasurable knowledge and experience!”

Melissa “Moe” Hagman, M.D. ’99, Res. ’02
Associate Program Director, UW Boise Internal Medicine Residency Program, Boise VA

Where did you grow up?
Boise, Idaho. “Boise got its first mall around the same time I got my driver’s license. We thought the world had truly arrived.”

What was it like working in WWAMI communities as a student?
Friendly. “I did my third- and fourth-year student rotations in Pocatello, Idaho, and the Boise VA. The people were really welcoming. Basically, they said, ‘You’re important. We have a role for you.’”

Talk about your residency experience.
Relationships. “My co-residents at the Boise VA during the second year of residency are the greatest group of folks I could ever have hoped to work with. We are now scattered throughout Montana, Alaska, Washington and Idaho, but I know that I can call them anytime for advice on topics ranging from patient care to the best places to vacation.”

Where do you want to practice medicine?
Idaho. “I just moved back to Boise and the Boise VA, because I got hooked on it — like a lot of internal medicine residents who went through the WWAMI program. I’m a teacher at heart, and many trainees come to the Boise VA. Plus, I have nieces and nephews in Boise. They’re fast becoming teenagers, and I wanted to come back to Idaho to go to their birthday parties and go boating with them before they think I’m uncool.”

Final words on WWAMI?
Fantastic. “WWAMI is fantastic. I’d probably give a good chunk of my paycheck and my left arm for it to continue.”