Natividad Medical Center Receives Two Grants

  • October 10, 2012

Natividad Medical Center has received two grants. One from the Health Care Workforce for its family practice program and one from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services for its cross-cultural training program to teach medical residents skills to provide evidence-based Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) for patients who have, or are at risk for, a substance use disorder with emphasis on youth, Latinos and seniors.

The Health Workforce Grant:
Natividad Medical Center’s family practice program was one of five in the state to receive a nearly $210,000 grant from the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OHSPD). In September 2012, OSHPD announced 29 grants (most of them for smaller amounts) through the Song-Brown program, totaling about $2.9 million.

The Song-Brown Health Care Workforce Training Act of 1973 increases the number of health professional training slots in medical schools, and contributes funding to family practice residency, nurse practitioner, physician assistant and registered nurse education programs.

"Song Brown grants allow those residencies that operate in underserved areas to continue their mission of teaching residents and medical students and encouraging them to serve in areas of unmet need,” Steven W Harrison M.D., Program Director Natividad Medical Center Family Medicine Residency Program, Salinas, California. We are thrilled with the support and confidence that this grant demonstrates and will continue to strive to produce excellent primary care physicians to meet the needs of our population now and in the future. "

“Educating and training these new medical professionals improves quality and access for all Californians as we continue to promote a diverse and competent health care workforce,” Five million Californians are expected gain health care coverage under the federal Affordable Care Act. The grants will fund 56 residents in total; four of those are at Natividad Medical Center.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHSA) SBIRT Grant:
In addition for the 5th year in a row, Natividad Medical Center has been awarded a grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHSA) SBIRT Grant. This year is the 5th and final year of the grant program and Natividad was awarded $352,539 for this year.

Natividad Medical Center’s SBIRT Medical Residency Program goals are to successfully train residents to understand substance use disorders from a medical and public health perspective; support residents in developing transferable medical practice competencies, including SBIRT and Motivational Interviewing (MI) skills; and build competencies by working with diverse populations.
Natividad’s Family Medicine Resident Physicians have the unique opportunity to practice medicine in primary care settings including family medicine, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, emergency medicine, psychiatry and community medicine. Residents will also have the opportunity to conduct screening and brief intervention with vulnerable populations, including youth, Latinos and seniors in a variety of community-based settings.

"We really want to give physicians the tools to identify substance abuse at the bedside," said Natividad Medical Center Dr. Gary Gray, Chief of Staff and Director of the Family Practice Residency Program. "We want to take it out of the treatment center and into the exam room. The goal is to identify substance abuse and offer at least brief treatment, and the hope is that over time we will be able to get the patient to accept more indepth treatment." Gray said that even less-acute substance abuse problems have health related consequences, such as making it more difficult to manage chronic diseases like diabetes and hypertension.

With the final year of funding, Natividad’s SBIRT Medical Residency Program will train more residents and implement a variety of strategies to sustain the teaching program, including more fully developing Faculty Training in SBIRT and MI; providing updated resident training on MI, with increased emphasis on working specifically within the Latino culture.

About Natividad Medical Center

Natividad Medical Center is a Monterey County owned and operated 172 bed acute care hospital providing health care services to the people of the county for more than 125 years. Natividad Medical Center offers inpatient, outpatient, emergency, diagnostic and specialty medical care. NMC provides more than 33,000 patient days each year and more than 42,000 emergency department visits per year. NMC is ranked #1 in newborn deliveries in Monterey County. Natividad is the only teaching hospital on the Central Coast, through its affiliation with the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). With a medical staff of more than 250 physicians, Natividad’s mission is to continually improve the health status of the people of Monterey County through access to affordable, high-quality health care services. Natividad is based in Salinas, California. For more information, please call 831-755-4111 or visit