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NMCCL’s sports medicine fellowship approaching inaugural graduation

26 June 2024

From Christopher Delano

CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. – Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune (NMCCL) received initial accreditation in 2022 as a fellowship site for Primary Care Sports Medicine by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, and for the inaugural fellows their fellowship is almost complete.The fellows selected for NMCCL’s Sports Medicine Fellowship, Lt.
CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. – Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune (NMCCL) received initial accreditation in 2022 as a fellowship site for Primary Care Sports Medicine by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, and for the inaugural fellows their fellowship is almost complete.

The fellows selected for NMCCL’s Sports Medicine Fellowship, Lt. Cmdr. David Harris and Lt. Peter Fischer, spent the year engaged with a variety of partnerships to ensure they will have the experience to successfully manage acute and chronic musculoskeletal injuries.

“The sports medicine fellows spend a lot of time in sports medicine, but they also spend time with the orthopedics department and with a civilian sports medicine doc out in town,” said Cdr. Emily Crossman, program director for the sports medicine fellowship. “My vision was that fellows coming out of this program will be really comfortable interacting with operational forces to promote and improve human performance, not just musculoskeletal, but nutrition and sleep and how important that is for overall fitness of Marines and Sailors.”
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, prepares a splint for a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, prepares a splint for a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, prepares a splint for a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
240617-N-KU586-1004
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, prepares a splint for a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
Photo By: Christopher Delano
VIRIN: 240617-N-KU586-1004

Fellows worked with athletic trainers at the Marine Forces Special Operations Command’s human performance center, Camp Lejeune High School’s football team, and the Pain Management, Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Center at Carolinas Center for Surgery in Jacksonville, North Carolina.

“Everyone was fantastic which was one of the reasons why when I was going back for my family medicine audition rotations of all the places I auditioned, this was the place I wanted to be because the faculty is so great to work with and that has not changed. That seems to just be part of the culture of the hospital and all the different departments,” said Fischer.

Crossman believes variety is necessary for the sports medicine fellows to have a multi-disciplinary experience of all things sports medicine. The fellows provided sports medicine support at events such as the Marine Corps Marathon, Wounded Warrior Trials and provided sideline coverage at local football games.

“It’s been great. We have had just a whole year of sports medicine-dedicated learning without all the other things that come along with being a doctor,” said Harris. “Having been a doctor now for a decade, to be able to go back and choose an area to focus on, I have a different appreciation than I had during residency, and so it’s just been amazing. Everybody is so welcoming and eager to share their knowledge.”

Crossman expressed her gratitude to all the collaborative support the fellowship received this year and is already planning future partnerships on and off base to further grow the depth of experiences fellows can receive.
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, performs a diagnostic ultrasound of a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, performs a diagnostic ultrasound of a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, performs a diagnostic ultrasound of a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
240617-N-KU586-1002
Lt. Cmdr. David Harris, a fellow in Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune’s Primary Care Sport Medicine Fellowship, performs a diagnostic ultrasound of a Marine’s hand injury at Camp Geiger’s Human Performance Center.
Photo By: Christopher Delano
VIRIN: 240617-N-KU586-1002

“We are going to drive toward more collaboration with the Marine Corps’ Semper Fit human performance teams,” said Crossman. “We have the expertise, and they have these strength professionals, athletic trainers, and it really makes sense for us to be kind of collaborating and all driving in the same direction.”

With graduation scheduled for June 28, 2024, both Harris and Fischer look forward to leveraging their knowledge of sports medicine in service of the fleet and the Marines.

“If you’re trying to make a golfer more functional so they can hit a ball further and straighter, you learn what has to make that happen. It’s the same stuff that makes your Marines back pain get better,” said Harris. “Marines must have the mobility…it’s all these things that help our body move in a pain-free manner, and the more we learn about it through sports, the more we can apply to all of our patients.”
Upon completion of NMCCL’s Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship, Harris and Fischer will report to their next assignments as board-certified family medicine physicians with a certification of added qualification in sports medicine.

The success of the Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship furthers the goal of NMCCL’s Graduate Medical Education program by offering additional areas of medical expertise to residents. In June 2024, the medical center welcomed the inaugural class for the Psychiatry Residency Program, a partnership with NOVANT Health, which will graduate its first class from the four-year program in 2028.

Story originally posted on DVIDS: NMCCL’s sports medicine fellowship approaching inaugural graduation 

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