Supporting the Next Generation of Family Doctors in Colorado—Commission on Family Medicine

Colorado currently has nine family medicine residency programs in the state for medical students after they graduate. All programs offer residents the opportunity to learn about team-based care, how to work with an inter-professional and how to work in a patient-centered medical home among many other skills. The family medicine residency programs play an important role in training new family physicians as demand for the specialty continues to increase across the state.

The Commission on Family Medicine (COFM) is unique to Colorado as it oversees coordination and collaboration among the state’s independent residency programs. The commission recruits medical students and faculty physicians to come to Colorado, coordinates required rural rotations for all students and advocates for the reform of Medicare and expansion of primary care training positions. 

The commission has a 38-year success record. Despite the national trend of fewer medical students choosing primary care, COFM has successfully recruited high-quality medical students to Colorado. In 2014, the family medicine residencies conducted 868 interviews with 456 students from 113 medical schools across the country to fill only 68 spots. As a result of COFM’s efforts, 64 percent of graduating residents stayed in Colorado and 40 percent of those who stayed chose to practice in rural or underserved communities.