Cape Girardeau

Cape Girardeau · Sikeston

Saint Francis Medical Center · SoutheastHEALTH · MO Delta Medical Center

If you would like to learn more about this site, please click one of the links below:

The Site

Students training at the Cape Girardeau site will work mainly with two local hospitals: Saint Francis Medical Center and SoutheastHEALTH. Some rotations are also done at Missouri Delta Medical Center in Sikeston, MO.

Saint Francis Medical Center is a 280-bed facility serving more than 650,000 people throughout Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Arkansas. Their major service lines, which have received national recognition, include the Neurosciences Institute; Orthopedic Institute; Family BirthPlace, featuring the region’s first Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit; Heart Hospital; Level III Emergency and Trauma Center with Convenient Care; Cancer Institute; and Fitness Plus.They recently completed the construction of a 208,000-square-foot combined Heart Hospital and Cancer Institute, where patients have access to advanced treatments and technology – under one convenient roof. Saint Francis Medical Center has been named one of the top 100 “Best Places to Work in Healthcare” by Modern Healthcare magazine for the fifth consecutive year – an honor no other employer/hospital in Missouri has achieved. The prestigious program is open to companies across the healthcare industry – hospitals, service companies, suppliers, payors and others – with at least 25 employees.

SoutheastHEALTH is a far-reaching network of providers and facilities including Southeast Hospital in Cape Girardeau, Mo., which provides a regional system of healthcare services throughout a multi-state region. SoutheastHEALTH serves patients in southeast Missouri, as well as residents in parts of southern Illinois, western Kentucky and northern Arkansas. SoutheastHEALTH has multiple campuses and facilities, such as HealthPoint Fitness in Cape Girardeau and Jackson, Southeast Home Health, Southeast Hospice and Southeast Endocrinology at Doctors’ Park, and Southeast Medical Plaza with locations on Broadway and Mount Auburn Road. In February 2011, the new Southeast Cancer Center, the largest construction project in the health system’s history, opened on SoutheastHEALTH’s West Campus. In addition, SoutheastHEALTH operates satellite outpatient Cardiac Rehab services in Sikeston and Dexter, Mo., and the SoutheastHEALTH Center of Ripley County in Doniphan, Mo., and its associated family clinic. Southeast’s specialized centers of care include: Southeast Heart Center, Southeast Cancer Center, Southeast Brain and Spine Center, Center for Women and Children Services, Emergency Services, Orthopedics and Joint Replacement Center. Each year, tens of thousands of patients see the difference at SoutheastHEALTH in technology, services and care.

Missouri Delta Medical Center is a popular site for surgery rotations. While general surgery rotations in Cape Girardeau are great general surgery rotations, they are just that…general surgery. Mostly gall bladder, appendectomies and other general surgeries. Students who complete their general surgery rotations at Missouri Delta partake in a variety of surgeries including but not limited to ENT, Cardio, and Ortho.  To be able to participate in these surgeries in Cape Girardeau, you must do them as surgery electives during your fourth year and are not able to do them during your 3rd year.

Single rotations are available at Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center and housing is available too at no cost to students wishing to complete single rotations. Student with ties to the region and a strong interest in Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center may contact the site coordinator, Cindy Robinett, to apply for Poplar Bluff as their core site.

Possible Facilities

Saint Francis Medical Center
211 St. Francis Drive
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701
Medical Staff
Size of Hospital
ER Visits
258 beds
1701 Lacey Street
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701
Medical Staff
Size of Hospital
ER Visits
266 beds
Missouri Delta Medical Center
1008 North Main Street
Sikeston, MO 63801
Medical Staff
Size of Hospital
ER Visits
Local DME
186 beds
Jennifer Waller, MD

All rotations are completed one on one with preceptors. Students get a variety of both inpatient and outpatient rotations. At this site all preceptors work with students on a volunteer basis and do so because they enjoy working with students. Physicians are never “required” to take students. They do so because they want to give back to their profession and a community in which they have chosen to live and raise their family.

Frequently Asked Questions

Describe didactics at your facility.
Preceptor lectures, CMEs, journal club, and student case conferences are provided. Student case conferences are monthly (except in summer months), and a schedule of lectures and CMEs is provided annually. Students do morning rounds with attendings and are often given reading assignments. Overnight ER experiences are also provided as part of the Cape didactic schedule.

How many students, interns, and residents are on a rotation?
Cape Girardeau only hosts medical students. Students are always trained by physicians and never by interns and residents. This makes for an optimal training site for medical students.

How often are students one-on-one with an attending or resident?
Students are always one-on-one with an attending physician. Residents do not train in Cape Girardeau. Medical students do not have to compete with interns and residents for procedures and assisting in surgeries and obstetrics.

Are students offered/encouraged to actively participate in procedures?
This is one of the best parts of completing your clinical in a smaller community. Students are allowed to participate in many procedures. When students complete their Obstetrics/Gynecology rotations, they are actually allowed to deliver babies. You are always first assist in surgeries as there are not interns/residents in from of you.

Is the hospital affiliated with other hospitals? What other medical school affiliations does your facility have?
There are two independent private hospital facilities in this training site program, Saint Francis Medical Center and SoutheastHEALTH. They are linked by the Cape Girardeau Area Medical Society whose member physicians serve as preceptors for student training.  Medical schools that send students to this site include: KCOM in Kirksville, KCUMB in Kansas City, University of Missouri-Columbia, and UMKC in Kansas City.

What is the trauma level of your emergency department? If your emergency department is not a Level I trauma center, will students have an opportunity to rotate at a Level I trauma center?
Saint Francis has a Level III trauma center. There are no Level I trauma centers in this region. Students who would like to rotate at a Level I trauma center may certainly do an elective rotation and one of the many hospitals which ATSU has affiliation agreements with.

What is the on-call policy for medical students?
The on-call policy varies by rotation. Most rotations do not have night call. Students with strong interests in surgery, OB/GYN and other specialties which have a lot of call may talk with individual physicians and be put on the call lists to be called in for "interesting cases".

Is there 24-hour access to the library and Internet resources?
Yes. Students are given their own usernames and passwords to access resources at any time of the day or night.

Is charting done electronically?
Yes. Students are given their own usernames and passwords to access resources at any time of the day or night.

Is there a food allowance and how much?
Courtesy meals are provided in the doctors’ lounges at both hospitals.

Are pagers provided to students?
No. Most all preceptors use cell phones and take student cell phone numbers as well as give students their cell phone numbers.

Are lockers available for students to use?
Students are given access to the doctor’s lounge which is a locked, secure area, but lockers are not provided.

What unique qualities/opportunities does your facility have to offer?
The Cape Girardeau County Area Medical Society sponsors the students to attend all Symposiums sponsored by the medical society. The medical society also sponsors the student’s attendance at the monthly meetings which are held at one of the finer restaurants in town. The medical society also publishes a monthly newsletter in which it publishes all medical students written case studies.

Both hospitals are expanding at an astonishing rate. Cape Girardeau is the ‘medical hub’ for southeast Missouri with almost any sub-specialty you could want. Both hospitals are very competitive which makes for better medical care for patients and outstanding training for medical students. The Cape Girardeau sites gives students the hands on and one-on-one training as well as an excellent preceptor base of primary care and specialty rotations.

Site Visits

When are site visits scheduled?
Site visits can be scheduled at almost any time except for holidays.

Who should students contact to set up a site visit?
Please contact the Rotation Site Coordinator, Cindy Robinett, at 573.785.2444 Ext 3.

What is the site visit protocol at your site?
Students must contact the Rotation Site Coordinator at least two weeks before the planned visit. The coordinator will make arrangements and let students know who/when/where to meet. Any request made less than two weeks in advance will be considered, but may not be able to be arranged due to time constraints.

Area Information

Home to Southeast Missouri State University, the community enjoys many musical, theatrical, and visual art exhibitions at the Show Me Center as well as at the River Campus Performing Arts Center on the college campus which brings in major comedy acts, bands, along with Division 1A athletics. Also known for its wealth of fishing, parks, and other types of recreational areas, it is an area of impressive natural history and beauty. Nearby is the National Trail of Tears State Park; this river community is often frequented by visits from the Delta Queen Steamboat Company. Offering many modern amenities including retail shops, malls, over 100 restaurants, cinemas, water slides, go-cart tracks, and much more, visitors to this community never lack for things to do. Visit for more community information.

Cape Girardeau is less than two hours south of St. Louis on I55. In a short amount of time you can be in a major metropolitan area with a wealth of activities, sports events, shopping, and restaurants to satisfy everyone in the family.

The Missouri Delta Medical Center is located in Sikeston, a rural farming community with over 17,000 people. Sikeston offers the Annual Jaycee Bootheel Rodeo along with the Redneck Barbecue in August and the Cotton Carnival in September. The community has also long been known as the Home of the Throwed Rolls because of the famous Lambert’s Café. There are many more community events that take place throughout the year. To learn more about Sikeston, please look on the web at

Average cost of housing
Rental units range from $400-$650 per month; Houses range from $100,000 to $150,000, although nice smaller homes can be found for under $90,000. This is a major benefit to training in southeast Missouri. Students struggle to get by during medical school and with the cost of living being lower than in the city; students are able to live comfortable without a huge strain on their budget.

Nearest major airport
Cape Girardeau Regional Airport (CGI), Memphis International Airport (MEM), and Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL) are each approximately a two to three hour driving.

Nearest expressway
Cape Girardeau is located directly on I-55.

Informational websites

Student Typical Day

An average day in Cape Girardeau starts between 7-8 a.m., depending on whether there are morning didactics that day or not. Coming in early to pre-round before your preceptor arrives is always a good idea, however many of the preceptors will actually have you pre-round on your patients while they see other patients. Depending on the rotation and the volume of patients that you see with your individual preceptor, you will usually be done and free to go home anywhere from 5-6 p.m.

Every rotation is with an individual attending physician, so your exposure to each patient is definitely increased. Because of this, when the attending is comfortable with your abilities, you will find yourself becoming more responsible for individual patients that are assigned to you, but don’t be concerned; the attending always makes the final decisions.

Student feedback regarding site

"Being from this area it was nice to work one-on-one with the attendings who someday may be those I work hand-in-hand with for my patients. The close contact with the attendings is priceless – there’s no standing in line behind residents to suture, cut, interact with patients… People in the area, as a whole, have been very supportive and encouraging towards me as a medical student."

"Cape is a great rotation site for several reasons. First are one-on-one interactions with physicians who are excited to teach and mentor. The physicians here teach by making you an active participant in patient care. Second are hands-on opportunities. Physicians and staff at both hospitals allow you to participate in procedures and surgeries. Lastly, Cape is a great family town with excellent schools, plenty to do, great restaurants, decent nightlife, and is only 1.5 hours from St. Louis."

Click the following link for a printable version of this site's information:  Cape Girardeau pdficon_small