Our overarching mission is to ensure that every medical graduate currently residing in the U.S. is able to occupy space as a physician.
Goals to accomplish this mission
Goal 1 To unite medical graduates
We want to build trust and a support system within the community of medical graduates because trust is the bedrock that we must build upon to be successful. There is strength in numbers and the thousands of doctors who go without a residency training position every year no longer need to feel alone. Medicine is an extremely competitive and isolating field, so we need to exemplify the opposite of that status quo in order to unify these doctors. With that in mind, we are entirely staffed by volunteers – we do not take a membership fee and are an inclusive organization. We are non-partisan and engaged in working with all medical graduates. We hope to grow this organization to represent and advance the goals of these talented physicians. To do that all of these voices need to be represented in one place.
Goal 2 To increase public awareness of sidelined medical graduates as the solution to doctor shortages.
All of these medical graduates have passed three 9-hour United States Medical Licensing Exams which “assesses a physician’s ability to apply knowledge, concepts, and principles, and to demonstrate fundamental patient-centered skills, that are important in health and disease and that constitute the basis of safe and effective patient care (according to NBME on USMLE.org).” Thus, they are prepared to finish their residency training and function as a physician.
Fully qualified doctors (n=7,409) by the standards of their medical institution and the medical licensing exams went unmatched in March of 2021 and could enter residency today if given the opportunity. In 2020, this number was 6,570 U.S. Citizen unmatched doctors so the issue is getting worse every year. Why isn’t the Association of American Medical Colleges advocating for these unmatched doctors? With 0.72 residency positions per applicant, doctors living in this country are being sidelined. With the current doctor shortage of 33,000 physicians and widespread underserved areas, does it make sense to not utilize all physicians available?
Goal 3 To advocate for federal legislative reform that increases primary care residency training positions and recommend federal oversight of the matching process.
Residency positions are paid for by the tax payers through Medicare funding. We support and advocate for increasing residency positions through federal legislation such as H.R. 2256, The Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act of 2021.
Approximately $16 billion of Medicare funds go to pay for residency and fellowship training positions each year. Each training hospital employing a resident receives an estimated $100,000 per resident to train them per year. Each resident receives approximately $50,000 annually in pay. With only 31% of this $16 billion in funding going to primary care training positions, there needs to be a paradigm shift. Many countries devote at least 50% of their graduate medical education funding to primary care and the U.S. should seek to match this model. Therefore, we support increasing the percentage of primary care residency training positions (Family Medicine, Psychiatry, Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology).
- Helping to pass legislation that allocates more money for primary care residency training.
- These new training positions should be dedicated to and located in medically underserved areas of the country.
- Repurposing some of the $16 billion in Graduate Medical Education Medicare funding from fellowships or procedurally heavy residencies (that can pay for themselves) to fund more primary care residencies.
Goal 4 To advocate for state legislative reform that creates collaborative practice for medical graduates and increases healthcare access in underserved areas.
Collaborative practice training leading to an unrestricted license would serve as a useful alternative to the current graduate medical education bottleneck. States and territories such as Missouri, Arizona, Washington and Puerto Rico are currently utilizing collaborative practice to expand their healthcare coverage. We hope to help more states achieve this and spearhead a campaign that leads to an unrestricted license.
Goal 5 To support equal opportunity
As mentioned previously, the current system does not prioritize medical graduates living in the U.S.
The AAMC allows for the use of filters that automatically delete applicants even though applicants pay to apply. If an application is not viewed, the applicant should not be charged for that application and applicants that go unmatched should not have to pay in future years. Year of graduation filters should be removed to prevent ageism.
If you are currently residing in the U.S., graduated from medical school, and have passed your exams, we feel you deserve a chance to finish your training.
Military service status should also be added to the application. We are in support of our nation’s veterans and urge that the Electronic Residency Application Service application to include the ability to select veteran status. Without the ability to select previous service, veterans are being filtered out. This is against the law under USC Title 5.