PRACTICE PROVIDING COMPREHENSIVE, PERSONALIZED CARE.

PRACTICE PROVIDING COMPREHENSIVE, PERSONALIZED CARE.

The Department of Family Medicine at Creighton University School of Medicine prepares future family physicians to serve as patient advocates while delivering personalized care inspired by Jesuit values. As family physicians, our role is to provide care that's evidence-based, timely and focused on both prevention and treatment. We train some of the best and brightest doctors who stand ready to serve their patients.

We're proud to be one of the first departments to move to the new University Campus of CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center on 24th and Cuming streets (shown above). The new facility positions us to offer an experience at the forefront of interprofessional care.  

Residency Program

The Family Medicine Residency Program gives residents the skills and expertise to succeed in any practice setting. Through work with diverse patient populations, exciting research opportunities and mentorships with seasoned clinicians, you'll train to diagnose and treat various diseases.

What makes Family Medicine unique? After all, cardiologists take care of hearts, pulmonologists take care of lungs, and surgeons perform operations.

But what do family physicians specialize in?

Quite simply, family physicians specialize in the "Big Picture." Rather than focusing on a single organ system, or a single disease, family physicians care for the patient as an individual. Studies have shown that family physicians personally manage 90% of all healthcare problems patients bring to a doctor's office. The other 10% of conditions family physicians treat in concert with other medical specialists.

Family physicians can also be described as personal physicians. In addition to addressing medical concerns, personal physicians serve as patient advocates, assuring that individual patient needs are met in a sometimes fragmented and confusing healthcare environment. Family physicians ensure that consultations will be obtained in a timely fashion, and that patient concerns are addressed.

Family physicians are trained to deliver care that is comprehensive, focusing on prevention as well as treatment. As health care costs skyrocket, family physicians provide care that is evidence-based and timely, assuring that the patient's care is not only high quality, but cost effective

Family physicians are very much a part of the greater community. Family physicians understand that concerns for a patient's health and well-being do not end when the patient leaves the office. Rather, family physicians consider the patient's family, work and social environment when providing care.

Currently, much is being written in the medical and lay literature about the concept of a medical home. This principle states that if each patient had a single source of coordinated care, health care outcomes could be improved substantially. This new proposal of a medical home is based upon the same principles that have always constituted the bed rock for family medicine. Providing community based, comprehensive, cost effective care that focuses on both treatment and prevention have been principles that have always defined family medicine. More recently, family physicians have also been called upon to provide leadership within their individual communities, especially in the areas of public health, safety and disaster preparedness

At the beginning of the 20th century, most doctors were family physicians. As medicine became more specialized, the number of medical graduates entering the field of Family Medicine diminished. 

Now, a hundred years later, family medicine is once again attracting some of the best and brightest new physicians. These young doctors are dedicated to providing the sort of personalized care that is the hallmark of family medicine. It is indeed gratifying to see the impact that these young men and women are having on the delivery of healthcare in our nation and our communities. They stand ready to serve their patients with the sort of personalized care that all of us deserve.

Clinic Locations

CHI Creighton Health - Samson Way, Bellevue

CHI Health Clinic - University Campus

CHI Creighton Health - Benson

CHI Creighton Health - Midlands

About Us

History of Family Medicine

History of Family Medicine

Since colonial times in the United States, medicine has been divided into three distinct groups: the physician, the surgeon, and the apothecary. Physicians were viewed as elite and usually held a university degree. Surgeons, in contrast, were typically apprenticed and hospital trained. This distinction between medicine and surgery did not survive in colonial America. Physicians in America were expected to also perform surgery and prepare medicines. This was the beginning of the general physician in the United States.

The emergence of specialization within American medicine did not take root until the middle of the 19th century. As the base of knowledge within medicine continued to grow and many doctors chose to do more of what they were interested in and good at, specialization became inevitable. The role of the general physician remained an essential part of health care in the United States, however. By the early 1900s, many states required candidates for medical licensure, including the general physician, to have a one-year internship in a hospital setting in addition to possessing a medical degree.

Following WWII, the number of specialties and subspecialists increased at a phenomenal rate, while the number of general practitioners declined dramatically. However, the public became increasingly vocal about the fragmentation of their care and the shortage of personal physicians who could provide initial, continuing and comprehensive care. The concept of the generalist was reborn with the establishment of Family Practice as medicine’s twentieth specialty in February, 1969. Rather than training being limited to one year of post-graduate training, it was increased to three years.

History of the Family Medicine Department at Creighton University

History of the Family Medicine Department at Creighton University

In 1970, Creighton University School of Medicine established the Family Practice Division of the Department of Preventive Medicine, headed by Dr. Michael J. Haller, MD. In August of that same year, an approved program began for training residents in family medicine. A Family Practice Clinic was opened at 3374 South 13th Street in Omaha, staffed by residents and which served not only to help alleviate the shortage of primary care physicians, but also as a developing ground for the new specialty of Family Practice.

In June 1971, a “pilot program” was begun with Creighton interns at St. Joseph Hospital. Dr. Michael Haller, MD, established a program of airplane flight instruction for interns and residents in order to make practice in a rural community more attractive. He believed that faster mobility to larger cities would increase the desirability of rural community medicine and may help alleviate the rural physician shortage in Nebraska and other Midwestern states. Creighton was the only medical school in the country to have such a program.

In 1973, the Division of Family Practice went on to become a Department in its own right.

During the 1970’s, the Family Practice Department expanded its operations to include “model units” at three locations throughout which simulated the structure and functioning of a private family practice office for the training of its residents.

In 1973 the School of Medicine was one of only five medical centers nationwide to receive a $10,000 Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) planning grant from the Association of American Medical Colleges. This grant was to help determine how HMO’s could relate to academic medical centers. Dr. Michael Haller of the Family Practice Department was instrumental in helping to determine the feasibility of HMO’s at Creighton.

On December 11, 1977, the new St. Joseph Hospital, now known as CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center, was officially opened to the public and the former St. Joseph Hospital on 10th and Martha was closed.

Future of the Program

Future of the Program

In 2017, the Department of Family Medicine will move to the CHI Health University Campus Family Medicine Residency Clinic, PCMH. This 90,000-square-foot building, at 24th and Cuming Streets in Omaha will be a medical home to people from across the metro area, offering outpatient, emergency and many of the diagnostic services that will experience tremendous growth with the move to the new CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center-Bergan Mercy.

We look forward to a bright future not only here at Creighton, but in having our graduates serve the medical needs of our patients throughout the world as representatives of Creighton and its Catholic, Jesuit heritage.

History of Department Chairs and Program Directors

History of Department Chairs and Program Directors

Department Chairmen

  • 1973-1977: Mike Haller, MD
  • 1977: Fred Pettid, MD
  • 1978-1981: Mike Haller, MD
  • 1984-1989: Eugene Barone, MD
  • 1989-1995: Mike Haller, MD
  • 1995-2011: Donald Frey, MD
  • 2011-2016: Laeth Nasir, MBBS
  • 2016 to present: Amy McGaha, MD

Department Program Directors

  • 1970-1978: Mike Haller, MD
  • 1978-1985: Fred Pettid, MD
  • 1985-1991: Richard Hurd, MD
  • 1991-1993: John Kuncaititis, MD
  • 1993-1997: Donald Frey, MD
  • 1997-1999: Jim Hougas, MD
  • 1999-2001: Donald Frey, MD
  • 2001-2004: Judson Jones, MD
  • 2004-2010: Thomas Hansen, MD
  • 2010-2016: Amy McGaha, MD
  • 2016 to present: Michael Greene, MD