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Cape Fear Valley partners with Drexel University

The health system will serve as a regional medical campus for medical students at Drexel University.


The Cape Fear Valley Health System will serve as a regional medical campus for Drexel University College of Medicine starting in May, officials said.

The affiliation agreement gives medical students at Drexel the opportunity to select the health system for their clinical rotations in their third and fourth years of medical school, the health system said in a release Thursday.

“We are thrilled to welcome Drexel medical students and know that our community’s Southern hospitality will make them quickly feel at home here,” Mike Nagowski, chief executive officer for Cape Fear Valley Health, said in the release. “We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with Drexel.”

Nagowski said the agreement aligns with Cape Fear Valley Health’s goal to support innovative advances in medical care, training and access to providers in the region.

“Combined with Drexel’s expertise and interest in establishing an additional teaching site to expand their own footprint in the southeastern United States, this is good news for our region,” Nagowski said.

Cape Fear Valley Health and Drexel recently signed the affiliation agreement, which will not affect existing partnerships with other programs and their medical students, the release said.

“The need for more entries into the health care workforce in southeastern North Carolina is great. The partnership with Drexel will support our efforts to expand the health care workforce,” Nagowski said.

“Third- and fourth-year clerkships are a transformative period for an aspiring physician,” said Charles B. Cairns, senior vice president of Medical Affairs and dean of Drexel University College of Medicine. “This collaboration provides an especially valuable setting for our students to treat diverse patient populations and consider Cape Fear Valley Health System and North Carolina as a place to pursue their future careers in medicine.”

The new affiliation - along with the existing residencies and programs – will help address the need for more doctors in a region where the population continues to grow, Nagowski said.

“The addition of these students on our campus, with our existing graduate medical education residencies and expanded medical research in our region will help us make measurable progress toward training the next generation of health care providers who will live and set down roots in southeastern North Carolina,” he said. 

Cape Fear Valley Health System, Drexel University, regional medical campus