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SIU medical program aims to fill rural health care gap

CARBONDALE, Ill. – Southern Illinois University’s medical school is trying to bring more doctors, physicians and medical students to Carbondale and nearby rural areas where they’re desperately needed.

The Carbondale Southern Illinoisan reports that under the new Lincoln Scholars program, some students would be trained entirely in Southern Illinois and not in Springfield, where the majority of SIU medical students now study.

University officials say the goal of the program is to groom the next generation of rural caregivers at a time when health care is increasingly concentrated in urban areas.

Administrators say it is especially important for SIU to launch the program because there are far more medical school alumni working in the Springfield area than in rural counties in the southern end of the state.
Information from: Southern Illinoisan,