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Seven graduate from SMC's Family Medicine Residency Program

July 9, 2012
SOMERVILLE, NJ, July 9, 2012 – With hugs, smiles and a few tears, Somerset Medical Center recently bid farewell to seven new family practitioners during a special ceremony at the Bridgewater Marriott honoring the graduates of its Family Medicine Residency Program.

Ken Bateman, president and chief executive officer of Somerset Medical Center, congratulated the graduates and the residency program’s faculty for carrying on a proud teaching tradition.

“As a teaching hospital, we not only provide residents ‘hands on’ learning with patients, but we offer a forum for research, new cures and technological advances,” he said. “By training the physicians that provide life-long care to generations of families, we are truly impacting the health of our entire community for years to come.”

Members of the Somerset Family Medicine Residency Program Class of 2012 are:
• Joseph A. Amavisca, MD of Bridgewater. Dr. Amavisca is joining a practice in Oregon.
• Christine Ibrahim Gorman, MD of Bayonne. Dr. Gorman will be doing urgent care in Monmouth County.
• Sheila Kennedy, MD of South Bound Brook. Dr. Kennedy will be joining a practice in the Atlanta area.
• Priti Narula Punj, MD of Hazlet, who served as chief resident. Dr. Punj will be joining a practice in Princeton.
• Purvee Patel, MD of Morristown. Dr. Patel will be joining a practice in Hillsborough.
• Ann Thomas, MD of Bridgewater. Dr. Thomas will be joining a practice in Hunterdon County.
• Yelena Zotova Bedard, MD of Raritan, who served as chief resident. Dr. Bedard will be joining a practice in Florida.

At the graduation ceremony, Dr. Bedard was honored as the Resident Teacher of the Year and received the Clinical Excellence Award, in recognition of her clinical knowledge, judgment and skills and dedication to providing caring and compassionate patient care. The Carl F. Meier Award was presented to Dr. Punj in recognition of her contributions to the residency program and for exemplifying the qualities of a family physician through service to the specialty, peers and community. Thomas DeAngelis, MD, was named “Attending Teacher of the Year” by the graduating residents in honor of his dedication to the education and training of family physicians.

Somerset Medical Center is an affiliate of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey –Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. More than 200 physicians have graduated from the medical center’s three-year Somerset Family Medicine Residency Program since its founding in 1975. The medical center’s 21 residents work under the supervision of attending physicians to provide care to its hospitalized patients, and along with attending faculty physicians, record over 20,000 outpatient visits each year in the medical center’s Somerset Family Practice Center. The residency program also offers a variety of community health services including home visits to the elderly, on-site medical expertise at local flu clinics, breast screenings and health and wellness education programs.

For more information on the Somerset Family Medicine Residency Program at Somerset Medical Center, visit the medical center’s Web site at