NC Medical Society unveils Preceptor Hub in Manteo

By on February 13, 2024

Manteo Healthcare Task Force meeting on Feb. 13

Initiative will train medical students to ease local provider shortage

At the Feb. 13 meeting of the Manteo Healthcare Task Force, Franklin Walker, vice-president of the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) announced the creation of a Preceptor Hub in Manteo that will provide training to medical students coming from several North Carolina colleges. The goal is to beef up healthcare resources and create a medical practitioner pipeline in a county and area where there is a clear shortage of providers.

That shortage was the impetus for the creation of the Manteo Community Health Center in 2023 as well as the creation of the Manteo Healthcare Task Force.

“We have come a long way with a lot of help in this effort,” Walker said at the Feb. 13 meeting. He also asked the members to make the incoming students feel at home, noting that “We’re going to need a couple of ambassadors [to take them] out to dinner, out to lunch and show them the community.”

Here is the release on the Preceptor Hub issued by the NCMS.

The North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS), in conjunction with the Town of Manteo Healthcare Task Force is happy to announce the formation of a Preceptor Hub in Dare County. Initially, the Hub will be a partnership between the Manteo Community Health Center in Manteo, Engelhard, and Ocracoke, the town of Manteo, and the NCMS. Additional medical practices with preceptors will be added in the future. UNC-Chapel Hill, Campbell University, Elon University, and Wake Forest University will send students to the Hub.

A Preceptor Hub is a community of experienced medical practitioners who supervise medical students, providing training and clinical education. They provide the experiential part of the curriculum by helping student physicians gain clinical medical knowledge by caring for real patients. They add to the number of healthcare workers in the region, thereby relieving the burden on existing practices. They also add to the quality of care.

The Preceptor Hub in Dare County comes after Outer Banks Medical Group told more than 2,400 patients that it would no longer provide services due to practitioner retirements, resignations or temporary providers not renewing their contracts.

NCMS Vice President Franklin Walker says, “The North Carolina Medical Society takes its commitment to the health of North Carolinians very seriously. This Preceptor Hub is a chance for us to bring our expertise and experience to a part of the state that needs quality healthcare. Through our Community Practitioner Program, we place physicians and PAs (physician assistants) in underserved areas and improve access to care.”

Joe Rockenstein, CEO of Manteo Community Health Center adds, “We must preserve the future of healthcare by embracing the precepting of the present. With this program, we hope to do that for all the communities we serve in eastern North Carolina.”

Town of Manteo Healthcare Task Force Chairman Malcolm Fearing stated, “Nearly two years ago, our community was in a state of crisis because we had thousands of community members who lost their access to healthcare…This preceptorship program will allow students to hone their skills here on the Outer Banks.  We are confident that we will prove to them that we all know this is an amazing place to live, work, and raise a family.”



  • Margaret Saunders

    Just a few questions: I thought the Manteo Community Health Care had lost its only doctor some months ago. If so, who will be training these students? How can there be any continuity of care with students changing every semester or so? How or where will these students be housed?

    Tuesday, Feb 13 @ 2:19 pm
  • Bev

    This articles leaves me with more questions than answers. We can’t hire and house 1 provider, but we can house several students?
    Are we getting students because they are free labor?
    I agree with Ms. Saunders. What about continuity of care?

    Tuesday, Feb 13 @ 7:53 pm