UCF’s College of Medicine and HCA Healthcare are starting their first residencies at Capital Regional Medical Center in Tallahassee — in dermatology and psychiatry, two specialties where the state has a tremendous need for more physicians.

Both programs, which recently received initial Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)  accreditation, are seeking applicants to begin training in July 2022 and 2023.

The psychiatry residency is the first and only program of its kind in the Big Bend region in northern Florida. This is UCF’s first dermatology residency and its third in psychiatry. The UCF-HCA graduate medical education consortium began in 2014 and now has 31 residency and fellowship programs across Florida, training more than 500 physicians to meet the state and nation’s physician shortage.

Here are details on the two residencies:


This three-year training program is for physicians specializing in the diagnosis, treatment and management of diseases affecting the skin, hair and nails, in addition to addressing associated cosmetic issues. The UCF/HCA program will accept two residents per year for a total of six accredited positions.

All applicants must complete a clinical internship (PGY-1) at an approved program before beginning their training in dermatology.  Applications must be submitted through ERAS (the NRMP program codes are 1587080A0 and 1587080R0). Qualified applicants will be selected for interviews. The program also plans to participate in the Match Week Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program (SOAP) in March 2022.

Stephen K. Richardson will direct the program. Richardson has over a decade of experience in graduate medical education and teaching medical students, recently serving on the faculty of Florida State University’s dermatology residency program. Richardson graduated from Harvard Medical School and completed his residency and cutaneous oncology fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania.

“This residency is an opportunity to train the next generation of dermatologists,” he says. “With our exceptional team of clinical dermatologists, surgeons, pathologists and support staff, we are committed to providing a comprehensive and rewarding educational experience for all our trainees.”

Florida’s climate and its aging population add to its need for physician skin specialists. The state ranks second nationally for the highest rate of new cases of melanoma, the most serious and deadly form of skin cancer. Many Florida counties do not have a single practicing dermatologist and the number of licensed dermatologists in the state has grown by less than the average of all specialties.

“The core purpose of this program is to provide exceptional dermatologic training and delivery of care to communities that lack sufficient physician numbers to meet their skin care needs,” Richardson says.

The new program will also provide an additional graduate medical training option for Florida medical school graduates. Dermatology is one of the most competitive specialties for residency applicants — last year 734 applicants applied for 477 positions available nationally.

UCF’s College of Medicine is of the nation’s top ranked schools for students matching into dermatology residencies, according to a recent report in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, with UCF graduates going to places like Mayo ClinicUC Irvine and Boston University medical centers. The study showed that schools with their own dermatology residencies had higher match rates.  National studies also show that the majority of physicians begin their practices in the location where they did residency training, so program leaders hope many UCF-HCA dermatologists will stay in Florida.

For more information on the new residency, please contact Meg Beerse, the Program Coordinator at mbeerse@datfl.com.


The UCF/HCA program will accept 6 residents per year for a total of 24 accredited positions.

Applications for this four-year residency must be submitted through ERAS (the NRMP program code is 1587400C2). Qualified applicants will be selected for interviews.  The program also plans to participate in the Match Week SOAP program in March.

Florida also has a shortage of psychiatrists. A 2014 Florida workforce report showed that by 2025, psychiatry will be the physician specialty with the highest shortage – a deficit of about 2,000 psychiatrists statewide. With society’s growing recognition of mental health, psychiatry training programs have become much more competitive and attractive for medical school graduates. Within days of its 2018 of a first UCF-HCA psychiatry residency in greater Orlando, the consortium received 1,700 applications for six available positions.

Jeffrey Ferraro is the program director for the new psychiatric residency. He is currently medical director of Psychiatric Services at Capital Regional Medical Center, an assistant clinical professor with the Florida State University College of Medicine and assistant professor at the UCF College of Medicine. He received his medical degree at Albany Medical College and was chief psychiatry resident at the University of Florida. He also served as medical director at the Tallahassee Memorial Hospital Behavior Health Center.

“We are excited to welcome the first class of psychiatry residents to Tallahassee and look forward to the opportunity to be part of educating the next generation of medicine,” Ferraro says.

For more information on the psychiatry residency, please contact Mandy Clements, the Program Coordinator at amanda.clements@hcahealthcare.com.