Allina Health New Ulm Medical Center receives award for its investment in rural health care workforce

The award from the Minnesota Hospital Association recognizes efforts and innovations to retain and recruit Minnesota’s health care workforce.

NEW ULM, Minn. (May 25, 2023) — Allina Health is proud to announce the New Ulm Medical Center received the Minnesota Hospital Association’s (MHA) 2023 Workforce “pipelines and partnerships” team award which was given at MHA’s inaugural workforce innovation conference. 

New Ulm Medical Center received the award for work that includes the Rural Physician Associate program, Rural Medical Scholars Program, LPN student program with South Central College, Network New Ulm Youth, Scrub Club and New Ulm High School medical terminology class.

“The programs that earned this award highlight Allina Health’s commitment to ensuring we have a strong workforce to care for our communities now and well into the future,” said Toby Freier, president, New Ulm Medical Center. “I’m extremely proud of our team and how they are constantly bringing fresh ideas to attract, educate and train our future health care workers. From high school partnerships to medical student rotations, they understand the importance of finding various connection points with people.”

Among the initiatives featured in the award recognition was the Rural Physician Associate Program, a nine-month commitment in which University of Minnesota third-year medical students live and train in rural communities. For the Rural Medical Scholars program, students stay at their preceptor’s home and work with them in the clinic for five weeks, giving a close-up experience of the work and life of a rural physician. There is also a program that hosts South Central College students training to become licensed practical nurses or medical students. Scrub Club reaches college and high school students with hands-on simulation, discussions surrounding the medical field and guest speakers. High school medical terminology students attend New Ulm Medical Center during their class time twice a week to hear different staff presentations and the Network New Ulm youth experience a day interacting in different departments and listening to presentations.

About Allina Health

Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. A nonprofit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 12 hospital campuses, 14 retail pharmacies, and many specialty care centers and specialty medical services, home care, and emergency medical transportation services. Learn more at and join us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.