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SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Department of Family Medicine

photo of David Stevens

David Stevens, MD, MMM

Interim Chair
Department of Family Medicine

Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine


Annual Report Highlights

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State of the Department of Family Medicine

This is a fascinating time to be a primary care physician in Brooklyn. Gentrification and hipsterization have transformed large sections of the borough, while adjacent sections remain some of the poorest in the state, and Central Brooklyn remains the #2 in health care shortage area in NYC. Outcome disparities between rich and poor persist in at all ages stemming from inadequate access to care and social determinants of health. 

Downstate’s Department of Family Medicine central goal is to reduce the health care disparities our patients suffer from through 3 mechanisms:

  1. Training physicians to be leaders and practitioners of primary care throughout the life cycle, understanding their patients within the context of their family and community
  2. First-rate medical care delivered at its two practices, both certified Level 3 Patient Centered Medical Homes, as well as its inpatient service and its 5 school-based health clinics.  
  3. Innovation to better address the needs of high risk patients such as integration of behavioral health care into primary care, partnering with community-based organizations that support our patients in their neighborhoods, and collaboration with nurses and pharmacists to target priority population health risks

2017-2018 has been a year of growth and transformation for Family Medicine, with the addition of 2 new core faculty members, a medical director for our University Hospital-based clinic, and a lead physician for our inpatient service. We’ve grown our faculty to include family physicians leading innovative practice models throughout Central Brooklyn. We’ve revamped our quality improvement process to reflect our evolving focus on population health and value-based purchasing with projects led both by residents and by faculty. We’ve updated our resident curriculum to reflect advances in medical education theory, and we’ve updated the curriculum for the Family Medicine student clerkship.

The coming year will see even more change. New York State’s investment in developing primary care in underserved areas of Brooklyn is unprecedented. Downstate Family Medicine will be called on to take the lead as Downstate partners with new and existing clinical affiliates to meet the increased demand for primary care physicians to practice, lead and innovate throughout Brooklyn to help our patients lead their healthiest lives.