23% of medical graduates applying for Residency in the USA have failed to obtain places in the Match this year. Last week, more than 29,000 graduates obtained Residency places but 8,640 did not, leaving them unable to practice medicine in the USA.
Reasons for failing to secure a Residency
Most of the graduates who did not achieve the desired places in Residency programmes had low scores in the board exams or multiple attempts at these exams or medical degrees from foreign medical schools all of which Residency Programme Directors view as red flags.
Doctors graduating from the traditional medical schools have 94% chance of securing a place in Residency but this leaves 6% who do not succeed. Some young doctors secure places under the Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program (SOAP) which matches up graduates with Residency places still vacant after the Match, other start to work in Research or pursue further educational qualifications. Within 5 years of graduation, 99% secure places.
The issue of unemployed medical graduates has been taken up by the American Medical Association which has demanded more funding from insurance, government and foundations to create more residency places.
Arkansas passed new regulations this year to permit physicians who have not completed Residency to practice medicine with an "Assistant Physician" license which permits practice under supervision. However the medical establishment has frowned on this.
Alternate options are for USA medical graduates to pursue training in other countries such as Australia and New Zealand which have multiple training places. Check out the options on our website job search.