Wednesday, May 30, 2012
For Medical Students
More GME slots needed to solve physician shortage
The nation's projected physician shortage will not be alleviated unless more residency positions are created to keep pace with the growing number of medical school graduates, education officials told American Medical News recently.
American Medical News reported those comments in a story about rising enrollment at the nation's allopathic medical schools. Enrollment at those schools is expected to expand by 30 percent during a 15-year period ending in 2016, according to a new survey from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).
However, AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, MD, said to American Medical News, "this won't amount to a single new doctor in practice without an expansion of residency positions."
Medicare funding for graduate medical education (GME) has remained stagnant since the Balanced Budget Act of 1997. Meanwhile, competition for residency positions continues to increase. This year 38,377 medical school graduates from the United States and abroad applied for 26,722 U.S. residency positions. Of those, 22,934 applicants from U.S. medical schools were assigned first-year residency positions.
"It's a very real, immediate concern that we will have all of these medical school graduates coming out of school, and some of them won't find a training position because there aren't enough," Christiane Mitchell, AAMC's director of federal affairs, told American Medical News.
The AAMC and AMA continue to advocate for an increase in GME funding and an increase in residency positions.
Weigh in on AMA policy proposals from AMA-MSS
All AMA medical student members are invited to submit online comments on AMA Medical Student Section (MSS) resolutions through an AMA-MSS online "reference committee" forum.
Testimony submitted online will be considered for the preliminary reference committee report, which will be prepared in advance of the AMA-MSS Annual Assembly Meeting. The preliminary report will serve as the basis for extraction and discussion at the traditional on-site reference committee meeting, which will take place June 15 during the AMA-MSS meeting.
The online "reference committee" forum will be open until noon Central time June 6. This year's AMA-MSS meeting will be the section's first advocacy-focused meeting, and all resolutions in the online forum meet the criteria for consideration.
Vote for the AMA-MSS national service project
Medical student members of the AMA can make a special impact on the communities in which they live and learn through the AMA Medical Student Section's (AMA-MSS) national service project. Selection of the 2012–2014 project is now underway.
Participate in an online poll to vote on the next national service project. The four program options help advance heart health, end-of-life care, healthy habits and minority careers in medicine. Voting closes June 8.
Airfare discounts available for AMA-MSS meeting attendees
If you're attending this year's AMA Medical Student Section (MSS) Annual Assembly Meeting, you can receive up to a 5 percent discount on airline tickets through special agreements with American Airlines and United Airlines. Visit the AMA-MSS meeting Web page and click on "Airfare Discount" for details.
Specialties guide can help with career decisions
AMA medical student members have exclusive access to a helpful resource guide that can help them choose a career path.
Choosing a Medical Specialty: The AMA's Resource Guide for Medical Students offers detailed snapshots of the most common specialties and subspecialties with data from the Graduate Medical Education Directory, FREIDA Online and specialty associations. Specialty summaries include skills required to succeed in a specialty, interaction with common types of patients, guidance about work-life balance and more. AMA members can log in to access the guide.
In addition, AMA members can attend the AMA Medical Student Section's ninth annual Medical Specialty Showcase, June 16 in Chicago, and meet physicians from a variety of specialties, including radiology, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopaedics and emergency medicine. Physicians on hand will provide an introduction to their specialty and offer materials to help with career decisions.