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Family Medicine Santa Rosa - Highlights


Think Locally, Act Globally.

We have designed an innovative set of immersive learning experiences at the beginning and end of each residency year to catalyze each class’s learning as they move from one level of training to the next.

Four weeks throughout each year

  • R1: Clinic Immersion and Community Medicine: The first-year curriculum immerses interns in our Family Medicine Center and community partners FQHC Petaluma Health Center and Ceres Community Project. Begin and end your R1 year with a focus on clinical skill building and community medicine, spending time in the garden and kitchen at Ceres Community Project.
  • R2: Advanced Clinical Skills and Global Medicine: Expand your skills with leadership training and advocacy work, including an optional class trip to Guatemala with our Community Medicine Faculty to work beside lay health workers in a rural underserved community (pending safety of global travel). Engage in advanced clinical training to set you up for success as you transition to second and third year senior resident duties inside and outside the hospital.
  • R3: Leadership and Professional Development: Third year residents will broaden their expertise as teachers and practice leaders with a primary care leadership curriculum that will prepare you to be a superb clinician-leader in any community setting around the world.

Community Medicine

Maximizing the total health of our communities.

Our program engages residents in community health from day one. Our goal is for our residents to obtain the knowledge and skills to lead sustainable positive community change.

Residents receive a longitudinal curricular experience with our affiliated partner, Petaluma Health Center. Petaluma Health Center is a federally qualified health center (FQHC) which prides itself on being a high performing wellness and prevention-minded community health center. All residents see patients at PHC regularly throughout their entire three years, precepted by our Community Medicine Fellow. The curriculum includes community medicine, population health, public health, advocacy for justice in healthcare and other social determinants of health. Residents will gain the knowledge and skills to lead sustainable positive community change.

Dedicated community medicine rotations in all 3 years include additional opportunity to care for our community’s most vulnerable and participate in leadership training focused on optimizing community health. During this time, residents will see patients at the Jewish Community Free Clinic, Graton Day Labor Center. They also develop community leadership through participation at VOICES, Sonoma Health Action, and more.

Additionally, residents will receive longitudinal didactic curriculum in community medicine, population health, public health, structural competency, health equity, and advocacy for justice in healthcare.

Integrative Medicine

Including a focus on wellness and preventive care for both patients and physicians.

  • All residents are expected to participate in the University of Arizona’s Curriculum in Integrative Medicine (UAZCIM) for Residents. During specific rotations, residents will complete the UAZCIM curricular content that is specific to their current rotation. This includes formal didactics and guided online training. We offer an optional 200-hour certificate track to UAZCIM.
  • Personal and professional development through mentorship, protected time for reflection, and a culture of caring.
  • Formal rotation in Integrative & Lifestyle Medicine, with longitudinal training in HeartMath, Food as Medicine, and evidence-based herbs and supplements.
  • Many faculty with additional training and board certification in Integrative Medicine, Lifestyle Medicine, and integrative modalities (acupuncture, herbal medicine, manual medicine/OMT, mind-body techniques).
  • Focus on health promotion, preventive health, and lifestyle medicine.
  • Regularly scheduled activities through Physician Health & Wellness (movie nights, ski trips, group hikes, sports games) and Live Well Be Well employee wellness program.

Physician Health and Resilience

Our program values wellness and a healthy work/life balance. We believe that doctors who take care of themselves take better care of their patients. With a humane schedule (no overnight shifts in the first year and no 24-hour call at all!), strict adherence to ACGME Resident Work Hours requirements, and supportive faculty, we ensure that our residents “thrive.” Our faculty model healthy, balanced lifestyles.

Formal residency wellness practice includes:

  • Resident Balint Group: Balint is a group method of discussing and reflecting on the doctor-patient relationship. The purpose of the Balint Group Session is to build empathy for the patient and to explore creatively the unique bond between doctor and patient.
  • Personal & Professional Development (P&PD) Groups: Regularly scheduled with protected time for each class, twice per block, Personal and Professional Development (P&PD) sessions are facilitated by a faculty member to foster support and community during this dramatic time of growth and experience.
  • Residents will participate in HeartMath training and mind-body techniques such as guided visualization, and meditation.
  • Quarterly administration of the Physician Wellness Inventory (PWI) to monitor resident’s emotional and mental health.
  • Our Integrative Medicine Curriculum includes time for self-reflection, personal health goal setting, and respect for the body, mind, and spiritual aspects of the resident experience.

Diversity and Inclusion

Leading the nation in equitable care and reduced disparities.

In small group settings, residents will do cultural self-exploration assignments to encourage recognition of their own potential bias and stereotyping. Residents will also explore how historical, political, environmental, and institutional factors (including racism and discrimination) impact health and underlie health care disparities.

Other highlights include:

  • Health Disparities and Racial Justice Curriculum along with training in culturally competent care
  • Latino Health Module offering culturally responsive, bilingual care
  • KP Santa Rosa is a nationally recognized leader in LGBTQ Care – opportunities for advanced training in transgender medicine
  • Opportunities for high quality research around social determinants of health and reducing disparities in health outcomes
  • Commitment to the promotion and support of diversity within the residency, attracting residents, faculty, and staff of diverse cultural backgrounds and life experiences

Kaiser Permanente has been committed to providing culturally responsive, prevention-focused healthcare to patients for over 65 years. Our integrated, technologically advanced, outcomes-based clinical care has been applauded by health experts across the nation.

Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa serves an increasingly diverse population, whether defined by socioeconomic status, social determinants of health, sexual orientation and gender identity, race, or ethnicity. Nationally, such diversity is usually matched by discrepancies in healthcare outcomes. Kaiser Permanente Northern California has been shown to be a significant exception to this rule, renowned for both culturally respectful care and an innovative model of integrated healthcare delivery which can reduce or even eliminate disparities in healthcare outcomes within a diverse population.

Kaiser Permanente Access

KPACCESS is a new program facilitated by the Kaiser Permanente Santa Rosa Family Medicine Residency that provides vital access to specialty care for Sonoma County’s uninsured residents. This vulnerable, at-risk population receives short-term Kaiser Permanente insurance so they may access these vital services. The mission is in the name: KP ACCESS stands for Kaiser Permanente Access to Community Centered Equitable Specialty Services. We collaborate with Sonoma County community health centers to make high-quality advanced medical specialty services available to Sonoma County’s uninsured residents.

Referrals are generated by two local Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) – Santa Rosa Community Health and Petaluma Health Center.  Services are free of charge for KP ACCESS patients, who continue to receive their primary care through their original FQHC while enrolled. Once the specialty care is completed, KP ACCESS patients are transitioned back to their community health center. Our family medicine residents act as liaisons to direct patient care throughout the Kaiser Permanente system.

Scholarly Activity and Leadership

Dedicated time, training, and resources.
All residents and faculty are supported to develop their own ideas and passions around advancing the field of Family Medicine and our healthcare system. Projects include original research, writing, program development, quality improvement projects, and advocacy. All residents will have time and support to complete their two required scholarly activity projects within their three years of training.
Highlights include:

  • 1:1 support from our residency’s full-time research project manager
  • Availability of local data analysts to support research
  • Kaiser Permanente’s renowned Division of Research is available for programming and biostatistical support for resident projects
  • Network of librarians who can help ground your project in the latest research
  • Annual residency “Research Shark Tank” – our fun and collaborative forum for showcasing resident and faculty scholarly projects. During Shark Tank, residents and faculty pitch their research proposals in an effort to recruit resident and faculty colleagues to “buy in” and collaborate on their project.
  • Training and funding available locally and regionally for scholarly activity
  • Leadership and advocacy curriculum to prepare residents to graduate not only as outstanding clinicians, but also as outstanding physician leaders
  • Training in teaching and clinical leadership through two months of Ambulatory Chief Experience in the third year
  • Opportunities to present scholarly outputs at a KPNC regional scholarly symposium, UCSF Colloquium, and other regional/national conferences.

Residency Advising Program

At the start of residency, all residents are assigned a faculty advisor that follows each resident through their 3 years.  Each advisor is chosen through a rigorous selection process and is eager to develop a longitudinal and supportive relationship with the resident.  We recognize how busy everyone is, so we provide a catered lunch and dedicated time for the resident/advisor pair to meet monthly.   These meetings are 1:1, as the advisor aims to get to know the residents’ professional goals, listen to areas of struggle, and provide guidance to help the resident meet their specific career goals.  Advisors are advocates for the resident and receive ongoing faculty development training focused on helping residents find joy and meaning in a career in medicine.


Our program is well equipped to ensure that you receive safe, comprehensive training. Residents are trained with a longitudinal telemedicine curriculum to be able to conduct effective telephone and video appointments, as well as to appropriately answer patient questions through the electronic medical record.

During capstone, first-year residents receive a 3-hour training session on telemedicine, as well as a one-hour session on answering secure messages (emails) from patients. Faculty preceptors proctor first-year residents for each of their secure messages until they demonstrate independence in the safe and effective handling of these messages.

Telephone appointments are built into the residents’ continuity clinic schedules from the beginning of the first year. Some of these telephone visits may be converted to video visits, and office visit slots may also be scheduled by the patient as a video visit if they prefer. Faculty preceptors use split headsets to directly supervise residents during telephone visits until they demonstrate independence and confidence in safely delivering care via telephone.

In addition to a robust telemedicine curriculum, we provide safety training to make sure that you stay safe as you provide care to patients.

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