A Day in the Life of a Rural Family Physician


Original Presentation Date: 1/23/2020

Facilitator Lesson Plan

The Day in the Life of a Rural Family Physician teaching kit contains all you need to host your own team-based active-learning event featuring work by Scott Anzalone, MD, owner and CMO of StageCoach Family Medicine in Logan, Ohio, and clinical associate professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine in Athens, Ohio.

The life of a rural family physician is a mystery to many of today’s medical students. Those from rural communities may have encountered their own physician only episodically. If a student has always lived in the city, they may have never even met a rural family physician. The presentation portion of this teaching kit will focus on one family physician practicing in rural Ohio, who, until recent years, practiced full scope – office, hospital, maternity care, nursing home, home visits, endoscopy, minor surgery and orthopedics. He has also worn multiple hats including serving on the local school board. Participants will be encouraged through an in-session activity to explore scope of practice questions relevant to their region.

NOTE: Having a family physician present for the in-session activity will enhance the learning experience for your group. Although rural practice in the US will continue to evolve, showing how comprehensive practice can be done is still relevant, if for no other reason than letting history inform our vision for the future.

If you have questions about how to use or to adapt this teaching kit to your setting, contact us to schedule a phone call. We are happy to go over the details. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

  • Describe the varied scope of practice among family physicians in rural practice
  • Critically review some of the myths that exist around rural practice – its breadth, its intellectual challenge, and its difficulties and rewards
  • Develop their own vision for rural practice, even in the absence of local role models
  • Craft a path to rural practice that takes them through rural communities where family physicians still practice as comprehensive generalists

Scott Anzalone MD,
Family Physician, Logan, Ohio


Before your session
  1. Recruit your teams. Ideally, 4 teams of 3-5 participants.
  2. Schedule a room that can accommodate all your participants and AV to play the presentation.
  3. Distribute the Pre-Session link
  4. Download the Presentation Slide Deck.
  5. Review the Slide Deck. Be sure to look at the presenter notes.
During your session
  1. Arrange your participants into teams within the room.
  2. Facilitate your session by following the prompts in the presenter notes of the Slide Deck.
  3. Facilitate general discussion with the full group. Go over any lingering thoughts.
  4. Evaluate the materials on your experience.
Click to download the presentation slide deck

You will be asked to provide your name, email, and organization prior to accessing the download.