Medical Students To Build Dialogue With Asbury Park Residents

July 10, 2018 5:50 pm

The inaugural class of medical students at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University will spend Thursday, July 19, talking with and working alongside Asbury Park West Side residents to better understand the community.

Interfaith Neighbors of Asbury Park is coordinating the Community Immersion Day of work and community engagement for the new medical school students. Interfaith has planned the day so the medical students will meet and work with adults and children at three community organization sites –the Boys and Girls Club of Monmouth County, Coastal Habitat for Humanity, and Interfaith’s Kula Café and Kula Urban Farm.

“The planned Asbury Park immersion activities on July 19th is just one of the many programs we have developed to carry out the medical school’s mission to build community partnerships and to graduate doctors that seek to understand the many influences and drivers of health. We want our students to fully understand that  health and wellbeing happen in the community where people live and work and play, not within the four walls of a health care office or hospital,” explained Dr Carmela Rocchetti, MD Director of Human Dimension.

According to the school’s public statements surrounding its mission, the medical school is designed to “produce exceptional physicians who truly understand what drives health and disease, integrate technology and systems into their thinking and practice, and are able to improve the health outcomes of all populations.”

As part of the medical school’s community focus, all students will participate in The Human Dimension Course. Through this course, pairs of medical students will be linked to families from specified communities to build a relationship over three years.

“Through this immersion in the community on July 19th, we’re hopeful a relationship develops between many folks from the West Side of Asbury Park and these medical students which might enable the incoming medical students to have an ongoing direct dialogue and understanding of the residents’ healthcare needs and the specific challenges they face in finding care for themselves and their families,” said Walter “Chip” Craig, Associate Executive Director at Interfaith Neighbors. “The immersion is an early introduction to the community many of the medical students will ultimately serve if they become affiliated with Jersey Shore University Medical Center.”

Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall, which opened this month, is the only private medical school in New Jersey, and is financially operated by Hackensack Meridian Health, the largest health care provider in New Jersey. Seton Hall University partnered with Hackensack Meridian Health in the medical school’s development and currently has responsibility for the new school’s academics.  The school is located on the former Hoffmann-LaRoche site that straddles Clifton and Nutley. The first day of class for the inaugural class of 60 students was July 9th.





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