The Family Medicine Residency Program at MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center and MemorialCare Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach welcomed their incoming class of residents by immersing them in the experience of being a practicing doctor and a patient during orientation week.

Activities during orientation included a casting workshop, where they practiced casting application and removal on one another; a mini ultrasound workshop, where they learned the latest techniques in providing ultrasound care; and a tour of the emergency department and hospital, where they received firsthand knowledge of patient throughput and the patient experience. Later in the week, incoming residents were initiated with a ceremonial white coat fitting where they received their official “white coat.”

“It’s an interesting transition because you go from being a student and now, you’re a doctor, but you haven’t had a lot of hands-on experience,” said Abigail Fletcher, M.D., program director, Family Medicine, Graduate Medical Education at Long Beach Medical Center & Miller Children’s & Women’s.” We try to give all our residents a lot of hands-on experiences throughout their residency and that starts with their two-week orientation. It serves as a transition between graduating medical school and starting as someone’s doctor.”

Conversely, each year as the program welcomes a new class, they say goodbye to another class who has completed residency. The Family Medicine Residency Program ends its orientation week for new residents with a graduation ceremony and dinner for physicians who have completed their residency. This year, Family Medicine Resident PGY-3, Class of 2023 celebrated their graduation at the Long Beach Petroleum Club.

At this year’s graduation ceremony, the class honored volunteer faculty Steven Meltzer, M.D., and Jennifer Lim, D.O. with the Golden Apple Award for their exceptional work in mentoring the next generation of resident physicians.

Most students move on to different hospitals, but in some cases, if there is an opening and it fits, the residents can stay on with MemorialCare Medical Group. This year, Dr. Jennifer Perdomo has elected to join MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center after graduation as a permanent member of the physician staff.

“I first learned about MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center when my colleague matched at this program,” said Dr. Perdomo, who will join MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center as a permanent member of the physician staff. “When I learned more about the program, including the diversity of training and opportunities that are available, it quickly became my first choice among other programs. As someone who has an interest in women’s health, reproductive rights, and mentorship, I knew that this was the perfect place as it offered me opportunities within my interests. I especially love that it is a community program and that I can care for such a diverse patient panel.”

The Family Medicine Residency Program at Long Beach Medical Center is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. The Program offers six areas of concentration with additional training opportunities beyond the core training in family medicine. Set in one of the most ethnically and socioeconomically diverse cities in California, the program is committed to educating excellent, compassionate, socially conscious family physicians in an inclusive and supportive environment. The program has graduated residency-trained physicians since 1977 and fosters leadership by promoting community engagement, cultural humility, and inter-professional collaboration for the diverse, underserved community of Long Beach.

MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center Family Medicine physicians celebrate Dr. Jennifer Perdomo (sixth in on the left) on graduation night for family medicine resident physicians. Dr. Perdomo will join MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center as a practicing physician after graduation.