Structured Training for Rural Enhancement of Community Health in Obstetrics (STRETCH-OB)

STRETCH-OB is a track within our Family Medicine Residency Program for residents who are committed to providing obstetrics in a rural or underserved community. This is a HRSA-funded program and a collaboration between the University of Illinois College of Medicine Rockford’s Department of Family and Community Medicine and the Department of OB/GYN at UW Health SwedishAmerican Hospital and Crusader Community Clinic, as well as our rural partners. The purpose of the program is to reduce poor maternal and birth outcomes in rural and underserved areas by increasing the number of family medicine physicians with high-quality, evidence-based obstetrical skills who practice in these areas.

Residents participating in this track will complete all of the requirements for board certification in family medicine as well as additional obstetrics and gynecology rotations (and call) to enhance their obstetrical skills. Upon completion of their three-year residency program, STRETCH-OB residents will have achieved experience in higher risk obstetrics and surgical obstetrics; completing a minimum of 50 C-sections as first assist and 20 C-sections as primary surgeon.

STRETCH-OB Curriculum


  • Medical school graduation within one year of start date or recent clinical activity in the practice of medicine
  • Competitive applicant with demonstrated interest in practicing family medicine
  • Strong interest in obstetrics with an interest and aptitude for surgical obstetrics
  • Intent to practice in a rural or underserved community upon completion of residency training

These criteria are simply the requirements needed for your application to be reviewed; they do not guarantee an interview. Interviews will be granted upon further review of the application and all of its contents.

Application Process

To apply to the STRETCH-OB program, first complete the application through AAMC ERAS system indicating your interest in the University of Illinois College of Medicine Rockford Family Medicine Residency Program (#2268120C0). As part of the AAMC ERAS application, you should submit one letter of recommendation from your Department of Family Medicine, one letter from your Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, and a third supporting letter from Family Medicine or Obstetrics.

After submitting your application through the AAMC ERAS system, please submit a letter of interest via email to [email protected] addressing the following:

  • Your interest in family medicine
  • Your interest and desire to train in advanced obstetrics, including surgical obstetrics
  • Why you aspire to practice in a rural or underserved area

Your letter of interest should include your name and AAMC ID # as the header. Font size should be no smaller than 10 and the letter should be no more than two pages in length.

We will contact you if we wish to schedule an interview. Interviews will take place from late October through January. We also sponsor J1 visas.

Hurley, MD

Ogden-Moles, DO

Lilian Ameh, MD

Stephanie Werner, MD

Joseph Garry, MD, FAAFP, FACSM

Head, Professor of Clinical Family Medicine University of Illinois College of Medicine RockfordDepartment of Family and Community Medicine
Work 1601 Parkview Ave. Rockford IL 61107 Work Phone: 815-395-5805 Work Fax: 815-395-5822
Photo of Joseph Garry MD, FAAFP, FACSM

Biographical Info

Dr. Garry is a graduate of the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. He completed his residency in family medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles Center for Health Sciences and a fellowship in sports medicine at Thomas Jefferson University. In addition, Dr. Garry completed fellowships in faculty development and leadership in academic medicine. Most recently, Dr. Garry was an associate professor in the University of Minnesota Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, where he’s also been a practicing physician since 2009. He also served as medical director of the Sports Medicine Clinic there for several years.


University: University of Notre Dame
Medical School: University of Minnesota School of Medicine
Residency: University of California Los Angeles (Family Medicine)
Fellowships: Thomas Jefferson University (Sports Medicine)
East Carolina University (Faculty Development)
US Public Health Service (Leadership in Academic Medicine)


Garry, J. P. (2018). A rare case of thoracic spinal stenosis in a white male. Current Sports Medicine Reports, 17(1), 13-15.

Gavin, T. P., Kraus, R. M., Carrithers, J. A., Garry, J. P., & Hickner, R. C. (2015). Aging and the skeletal muscle angiogenic response to exercise in women. The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, 70(10), 1189-1197.

Zayed, M., & Garry, J. P. (2017). Geriatric anorexia nervosa. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, 30(5), 666-669.


Categories: Default, Family and Community Medicine, GME, Residency Core Faculty, Residency Family Medicine, STRETCH-OB
Updated 10 months ago.

This project is funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration (USDHHS/ HRSA), Primary Care Training and Enhancement‐Community Prevention and Maternal Health grant, Grant number T3442148.