Student Faculty Patient Simulator

Family and Community Medicine

The Annual Winter Refresher Course for Family Medicine

WRC-logoThe Winter Refresher Course (WRC) for Family Medicine is a regional conference presented in the metropolitan area of Milwaukee,Wisconsin. Typically attracting more than 250 family practitioners, FP physician assistants, FP nurse practitioners and FP residents, the WRC is sponsored by the Department of Family and Community Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin.

January 30 - February 1, 2019

View the Winter Refresher Course brochure (PDF)

Wednesday, January 30
3:30-4:30 pm
Therapeutic Potential of the Marijuana-derived Cannabinoids THC and CBD

Cecilia Hillard, PhDCecilia J. Hillard, PhD
Associate Dean for Research; Professor; Director, Neuroscience Research Center
Cecilia J Hillard, PhD, grew up in the suburbs of Milwaukee and credits her high school chemistry teacher for starting her on the journey to be a scientist. Dr. Hillard received her undergraduate degree in Chemistry from the University of Virginia and PhD in Pharmacology from the Medical College of Wisconsin. Dr. Hillard is currently Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Director of the Neuroscience Research Center and Associate Dean for Research at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Her laboratory has long-standing interests in the pharmacology of the cannabinoids and biochemistry of endocannabinoid signaling. Her laboratory contributed some of the early evidence for catabolism and cellular accumulation of the endocannabinoids. Her laboratory has explored the roles of endocannabinoid signaling in many aspects of brain function, including emotional regulation, addiction, and neuroinflammation. She and her colleagues have reported seminal findings regarding the role of the endocannabinoids in multiple preclinical models, including multiple sclerosis, depression and anxiety. Recently, she is collaborating with others to explore changes in circulating endocannabinoids in humans, with the goal of using this as a translational measure of endocannabinoid tone. Her work has been funded continuously by NIH since 1987, and she has published over 200 peer-reviewed, original papers. Dr. Hillard received the 2011 Mechoulam award for outstanding research in the area of cannabinoids and endocannabinoids and the 2017 Lifetime Achievement award, both from the International Cannabinoid Research Society.

Thursday, January 31
1:30-2:30 pm
Optimizing Heart Health: The ABC's of Primary Prevention

Joshua Liberman, MD, FACCJoshua Liberman, MD, FACC
Joshua Liberman has been a cardiologist in Wisconsin for 10 years, moving there after completing his fellowship in Cardiovascular Diseases at Loyola University Medical Center in Illinois. He has a very active clinical practice in both office-based and hospital-based roles at Ascension Columbia-St. Mary’s Hospitals. His practice focus is Preventive Cardiology, and specializes in risk evaluation, difficult dyslipidemias, and resistant hypertension. Dr. Liberman is a strong advocate of working to improve the social and environmental contributors to health, and supports a plant-based approach to nutrition counseling. He is Board Certified in Cardiology, Echocardiography and Nuclear Cardiology, and is a Diplomate in Clinical Lipidology.

Friday, February 1
7:45 am-12:15 pm
InfoPOEMs: Rapid-Fire Sessions of Need-to-Know Information Related to the Latest Medical Research

John Hickner, MD, MSc and Gary Ferenchick, MD

John Hickner, MD, MScJohn Hickner, MD, MSc
Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Family Practice
John Hickner, MD, MS received his medical degree from Indiana University, completed his family medicine training at the Medical University of South Carolina and earned a master’s degree in Biostatistics and Research Design from the University of Michigan School of Public Health.

During his career Dr. Hickner has authored over 100 research publications, several book chapters and over 60 editorials. He founded and directed three state and regional primary care research networks and was the first director of the AAFP National Research Network from 2000 to 2004. He is a founding member of the editorial board of The Journal of Patient Safety and is Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Family Practice. He has been teaching a novel, research-intensive, evidence based medicine CME course to primary care physicians for over 20 years.

Gary Ferenchick, MDGary Ferenchick, MD
Michigan State University – General Internal Medicine
Gary Ferenchick, MD, MS is Professor of Medicine at Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, where he practices general internal medicine and is deeply involved in MSU-CHM major curriculum renovation. He earned his master’s degree in human nutrition and medical degree from Michigan State University and completed his residency training in internal medicine at Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, where he has been a faculty member for over 25 years. Dr. Ferenchick is a Past-President of the Clerkship Directors in Internal Medicine. His research interest is the interface between medical education and information technology.


About the Conference
The conference is 2.5 days in duration with 16-18 prescribed AAFP CME credit hours. The unique format of this conference provides three topics each hour from which the learner may choose. Topics include updates, new information, and workshops all clinically based. The WRC staff also make efforts to bring new technologies in learning to the conference and encourage presenters to use PowerPoint and Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) in their presentations. Planners of the WRC make every effort to avoid clinical presentations that are sponsored by pharmaceutical companies. Standards of disclosure of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education are emphasized.

The Medical College of Wisconsin, Department of Family & Community Medicine appreciates the support provided by The Wisconsin Academy of Family Physicians and our corporate exhibitors.
Who Should Attend
This program is designed for family physicians as well as nurse practitioners, physician and assistants and other primary care physicians who practice in a variety of settings including the hospital, nursing home, and office.
Visit our online registration to register and for additional information (there are no hard copy registration forms available).

Registration fees are discounted by $50 if paid before January 3, 2019.
Please note: There is a $17 non-refundable processing fee for all registrations.

Fees are as follows
$495 - Physicians
$425 - Active Preceptors
$425 - PA/NP/Resident/Fellow/Inactive or Retired Physicians
$260/day - Daily registration

Contact Mary Ellen Radjenovich at or (414) 955-8189.
Conference Location

A block of rooms will be reserved for registrants until January 8, 2019 at a special rate of $119, plus tax, per night. If conference attendance exceeds expectations, rooms in the conference block may be sold out prior to January 10, 2019. Please call the Milwaukee Marriott West at (262) 574-0888 or (800) 228-9290 for reservations and mention the Medical College of Wisconsin to receive the reduced rate.

The 49TH Annual Winter Refresher Course will be held at Milwaukee Marriott West located just off I-94 in Waukesha at W231 N1600 Corporate Court, Waukesha, WI 53186.

If you would like to exhibit at the Winter Refresher Course, please contact Karen Krause at (414) 955-8696 or The Medical College of Wisconsin, Department of Family & Community Medicine appreciates the support provided by our exhibitors.
We're Green
Syllabus material will be made available for our attendees starting in early January. This will allow you to download the presentations onto your own laptop or similar device/to print out the presentations of which may be of interest to you before you arrive at the conference. No hard copy handouts will be provided. Download instructions will be sent out to you in early January.
Course Planning Committee
Adam Blackwell, MD, Program Director, Ascension | Columbia St. Mary's

Erin O'Tool, MD, Program Director, Ascension | Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare

Alan K. David, MD, Professor and Chair | Department of Family & Community Medicine

Jeff Morzinski, PhD, Professor | Department of Family and Community Medicine

Mary Ellen Radjenovich, Conference Coordinator

Karen Krause-Fromm, Exhibit Coordinator

Julie Staskunas, CS-FNP, MSN, Ascension | Wheaton Franciscan Medical Group - Internal Medicine
The Medical College of Wisconsin is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The Medical College of Wisconsin designates this live activity for a maximum of 16.50AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The Medical College of Wisconsin designates this activity for up to 16.50 hours of participation for continuing education for allied health professionals.

Application for CME credit has been filed with the American Academy of Family Physicians. Determination of credit is pending.

Contact Us

Mary Ellen Radjenovich
Conference Coordinator | (414) 955-8189

Karen Krause
Exhibitor Coordinator | (414) 955-8696