History Of The Program

Dr. John Weigenstein

John G Wiegensein, MD. Founder of the MSU Emergency Medicine Program in 1973 and founder of ACEP in 1968

As one of the oldest emergency medicine residencies in the country, the MSU/Emergency Medicine residency program conducted at Sparrow Health System and McLaren Greater Lansing has a long and vibrant history of existence. More than 40 years ago, Dr. John Wiegenstein began the arduous process of establishing the specialty of Emergency Medicine in the medical field. Generally considered the father of Emergency Medicine, Dr. Wiegenstein was the first president of The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) and worked for decades at McLaren Hospital. He served as faculty in the residency until his retirement, and was a man of great vision.

Dr. Wiegenstein recruited dedicated faculty and established a collegial relationship between two healthcare systems in Lansing, Michigan.  He also developed a long-standing relationship between the residency and Michigan State University College of Human Medicine and College of Osteopathic Medicine that still exists today. We have the privilege of being affiliated with Michigan State University, a Big Ten school with all the attributes while retaining the community training focus. This model has served our residents well.

The philosophy of our residency is one of community training with university affiliation to create physicians who are skilled in emergency medicine, able to work in any setting, and who care for patients from all walks of life equally. This residency was also the first dually accredited (ACGME/AOA) Emergency Medicine Residency in the world.

Our graduates have travelled the globe, achieved fellowship status in many subspecialties, become leaders in national organizations, program directors, department directors, and leaders in their communities. Lansing has served as the home of ACEP, SAEM, and ABEM. ACEP, ACOEP, and ABEM have been well-served by our graduates, with many achieving fellowship within these organizations, including the 2018 president of ACEP, Dr. Vidor E. Friedman being one of our graduates.