Director's Letter

Dear Prospective Colleague,

Welcome to Altoona Family Physicians!  Since 1975, AFP has been a leader in family medicine education with an outstanding national reputation for education, leadership, and producing well-rounded family physicians. I am excited to offer you the opportunity to explore our family medicine residency program.

I have had the privilege of being part of this great residency since 1984.  Upon my graduation from AFP in 1987 (it was known as Allegheny Family Physicians back then), I opened our rural office, Williamsburg Family Practice, and have remained with the program ever since.  Since I became Program Director in 2006, I have helped oversee the increase in residents from six to eight per year, the implementation of a rotating internship/TRI, and the integration of a large health system (UPMC).

During that time, our commitment to excellence, dedication to education, and focus on resident development has remained.  This level of excellence has been continuously earned by the exceptional residents who make AFP great.  In fact, many of these residents have chosen to remain in the area, and over 80% of the family physicians in the Altoona area are AFP graduates.  We also have several graduates on our hospitalist staff, and many of our graduates have pursued fellowships in specialties such as Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Sports Medicine, Obstetrics, and others.

Having trained with and having trained several of our faculty members, I can confidently say they are second to none in their commitment  to the residents and their education.  We are on the cutting edge of educational innovation and are constantly evaluating and improving our curriculum.  Resident feedback is important to us and guides all of our decision making.

From a generous salary and benefits package to an emphasis on resident wellness, our residents have the time and support to focus on their education.   I am sure you will find that Altoona is a great place to work and live, and I am proud that you are considering AFP to become part of your future.  I look forward to meeting you, and please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Sincerely,

Donald Beckstead, M.D., F.A.A.F.P.
Program Director
UPMC Altoona Family Physicians Family Medicine Residency