For more information contact: Chris Shields 651-296-8873
ST. PAUL - State Representative Carlos Mariani (DFL-St. Paul) was named the Allina Hospitals and Clinics "Legislator of the Year" for 2005 along with State Senator Sandy Pappas. Mariani was honored for successfully authoring legislation that gave state funding to the United Family Health Clinic Residency Program. The program trains future doctors to work in family health practice in underserved areas in both inner city and rural communities, a less lucrative position in the health care field. The urban program will be located in St. Paul's West Seventh neighborhood.
"The United Family Health Clinic Residency Program has a proven track record of producing doctors who go on to serve low-income and minority communities. These communities have been underserved for far too long; state funding for this program should begin to change that, " Mariani said.
The training initiative was the only medical residency program in Minnesota not receiving state funding. Its leaders instead chose to wait and see if the program was a success before asking the state to invest.
"I feel fortunate to have played a small part in something that will give the state a return on its investment in the form of healthier Minnesotans," Mariani added.