Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority Gift Will Lighten Load for 20 Future MSM Doctors


ATLANTA – March 29, 2018 – Twenty future doctors from Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) will graduate with a smaller student debt load, thanks to a $400,000 gift from the Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority (FDHA).

MSM President and Dean Valerie Montgomery Rice, M.D., announced the gift during her annual “State of the School” address, flanked by MSM alumnus and FDHA board member Dr. Sultan Simms, vice president and market medical director of behavioral health at WellCare Health Plans.

“Our partnership with the Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority allows us to serve the most vulnerable populations in our community. The FDHA also oversees Grady Health System, one of our primary clinical partners,” Montgomery Rice said. “These funds will help us increase diversity among doctors and help develop primary care physicians committed to working in underserved urban and rural areas.”

The Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority Scholars Fund will provide each of the 20 M.D. students with $5,000 in annual scholarships from 2018 to 2021. Applicants must have graduated from a Fulton or DeKalb County high school and agree to perform community service at the MSM student-run H.E.A.L. (Health Equity for All Lives) Clinic. Recipients will be selected based on financial need.

“At the FDHA, our mission is to decrease health disparities, and one way to do that is by educating more physicians. We know that Georgia only has 60 percent of the primary care physicians that we need, between retirements and the increasing cost to become a doctor,” explained CEO Lisa Flagg. “The FDHA felt that a scholarship to assist medical students was one small way to increase the number of physicians serving our community.”

MSM will name five of the scholarships in honor of the late Fulton County Commissioner Joan Garner, a longtime community activist and organizer, who passed away April 18, 2017.