Message from the Chair
Welcome to our departmental website. Please browse our web pages and get to know our superb faculty, residents and staff. These are exciting times at the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center, Paul L. Foster School of Medicine - the only four year medical school on the US - Mexico border; the medical school received full accreditation in February 2013 from the LCME, and we will soon be a stand-alone Health Sciences University in El Paso. The Institution is continuing to recruit high caliber medical educators, researchers and clinicians to meet the needs of our educational, research and clinical missions and to address the needs of our underserved, predominantly Hispanic border population.
In the Department of Family and Community Medicine, we are increasing the size of our faculty as we expand our clinical care operations, increasing our medical student teaching commitments and expanding our research collaborations. In addition to our already strong 8-8-8 fully accredited Family Medicine Residency Program, we started an ACGME accredited Sports Medicine fellowship in July 2011 with two fellows per year.
We provide care for several underserved communities in the Far East El Paso area, which provides a rich learning environment for our learners. We are transitioning to a Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) model at our main clinical site in northeast El Paso, The Texas Tech Family Medicine Center, which is a state-of the-art facility with a modern Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system.
Our clinical research program has a major focus on cancer prevention and control and our faculty have been or are currently funded through the NIH, the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT), the AAFP Foundation, The American Cancer Society and the Komen Foundation. We will continue to focus on developing programs in cancer prevention and control to help improve the health of our border community and the nation.
The City of El Paso is a great place to live; it is nestled between the beautiful Franklin Mountains and the Rio Grande and resides at the confluence of Texas, New Mexico and Mexico. El Paso is one of the safest mid-sized cities in the United States and its residents enjoy a near perfect climate with more than 300 days of sunshine a year, numerous outdoor pursuits, as well as a vibrant city life at an affordable cost of living.
Dr. Gurjeet S. Shokar joined the Department as Professor and Chairman of the Department of Family and Community Medicine in March of 2010. Prior to his current appointment, he was at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB) where he served as Professor of Family Medicine, University of Texas Distinguished Teaching Professor, and director of the medical student education programs for the Department of Family Medicine. He is a nationally recognized medical educator, an expert in web-based medical education, and has led the development of a multi-award winning web-based case development software.
He has also been the recipient of curriculum development awards at the regional and national level, as well as multiple teaching awards, culminating in his induction into the UTMB Academy of Master Teachers in 2007. In the past, he has chaired the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine national conference on medical student education, and served on a national task force that developed the first ever national Family Medicine clerkship curriculum. He has remained active as a clinician and has been recognized as one of the Best Doctors in America since 2005. His academic interests include innovation in medical education, leadership training and faculty development. His clinical interests include wellness and health promotion.
Dr. Shokar grew up in England and completed medical school at Dayanand Medical College in India in 1988. He returned to England to complete residency training in Family Medicine, followed by a period of practice in Oxfordshire, England. He moved to the US in 1996 and underwent further residency training at St Joseph Hospital in Houston, Texas. He is married with three children.