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Berger Health System joins consortium to train Ohio University medical students


Shea McMahon, Marketing & Communication

740.420.8197 (office)


Karoline Lane, Director of Communication

740.593.2261 (office)

(ATHENS, Ohio – Nov. 2, 2012) The Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (OU-HCOM) announced today a new partnership with Berger Health System of Circleville, Ohio, to assist in the training of osteopathic medical students. 

Berger has joined the Centers for Osteopathic Research and Education (CORE), a statewide medical education consortium of 25 teaching hospitals in Ohio, for which OU-HCOM is the academic partner. Third and fourth year OU-HCOM students conduct rotations at CORE hospitals, where they gain clinical skills and explore the full range of medical specialties.

“We are pleased to begin this relationship with Berger and to have the opportunity to utilize the knowledge and expertise of their physicians to help educate our students,” said Kenneth Johnson, D.O., dean of OU-HCOM. “Together, we can work to provide quality health care to the residents of southeastern Ohio.”

“Berger is excited to become an ancillary member of CORE and formalize our relationship with OU-HCOM,” said Keith Holten, M.D., chief medical officer at the hospital. “This will allow us to expand medical student teaching on our campus. Berger’s medical staff has a long tradition of training medical students, and we look forward to new teaching opportunities. Ultimately, the students’ real-life exposure to medicine in a community like Circleville will increase the attraction for students to work in a small town after completion of their training.”

The addition of Berger to the CORE system enables OU-HCOM to provide additional opportunities to train medical students in the much needed areas of primary care,” said Nicole Wadsworth, D.O., interim associate dean for academic affairs.

Our expanded relationship with Berger Health System will add many additional rotation opportunities, particularly in the primary care fields of internal medicine, pediatrics and family medicine,” Wadsworth said.OU-HCOM and CORE are excited to strengthen this relationship and are looking forward to these new opportunities for our third and fourth year medical students.”

During their third and fourth years of clinical rotations, OU-HCOM students explore primary care and the full range of specialties in rural, suburban and urban practice settings and where they gain the clinical skills to prosper in today’s rapidly-changing medical practice environment. Upon graduation, many OU-HCOM graduates are accepted into internships and residencies in more than 90 programs available at the CORE hospitals around the state. 

"This partnership continues to illustrate how Berger is collaborating to bring necessary services to our community.  We look forward to the relationship with CORE.  I believe this dynamic program combined with the expertise of our physicians will enrich the learning culture of our organization and build a pipeline for the ongoing excellence of our medical staff,” said Tim A. Colburn, president and CEO of the Berger Health System.

There is currently a national shortage of primary care physicians who practice family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. Within the next decade, experts predict a national shortage of more than 45,000 primary care physicians.

OU-HCOM leads all Ohio medical schools in training primary care physicians who stay in Ohio to practice. Of the college’s nearly 2,700 graduates, 60 percent have remained in Ohio to practice. Fifty-six percent of the college’s graduates in Ohio practice in the primary care fields of family medicine, internal medicine, and pediatrics, and of those physicians, 56 percent practice in communities with fewer than 50,000 residents.

Berger becomes the eighth CORE hospital in southern and southeastern Ohio, which includes OhioHealth Doctors Hospitals of Columbus and Nelsonville, Adena Health System and the Chillicothe Veterans Administration Medical Center in Chillicothe, Southern Ohio Medical Center in Portsmouth, O’Bleness Memorial Hospital and the Appalachian Behavioral Health Center in Athens, Fairfield Medical Center in Lancaster, and Marietta Memorial Hospital. Hospitals in Akron, Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, Massillon, Sandusky, Youngstown and Warren are also CORE members.

For more information about CORE, see


About Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine

The Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine is a leader in providing a patient-centered, clinically integrated medical education continuum, from pre-medical education to undergraduate medical education, and on through residency training, with an emphasis on primary care. Focused research and community health programs speak to the college’s commitment to improving health and well-being in Ohio communities and quality of life for patients. Commercialized medical research innovations have saved patient lives worldwide and placed Ohio University first in state and fourth in the nation among higher education institutions for research return-on-investments. The state’s only osteopathic medical school, the college was founded in 1975 and is currently located in Athens and is slated to open a campus in Dublin Ohio, in July 2014. 

About Berger Health System

Founded in 1930, Berger Health System is a full service hospital and community healthcare system serving the residents of Pickaway County and its surrounding communities. With over 200 physicians on its medical staff, Berger is committed to offering a full range of inpatient and outpatient care services across a number of Pickaway County locations. For more information on Berger Health System, visit us online at and follow us on

Twitter @BergerHealthSys.


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Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
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Last updated: 01/28/2016