Twenty-two College of Medicine (COM) graduates at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science (CDU) joined their peers across the nation when they learned where their paths would take them on Friday, March 15, for Match Day; a day medical school graduates find out into which residency programs they’ve been accepted.
Most CDU College of Medicine graduates are matched into primary care specialties, with 76 percent of students pursuing fields such as family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics. The remaining 24 percent will pursue sub-specialties, such as emergency medicine, psychiatry and general surgery. Of all CDU students matched, 80 percent will complete their residencies in California, and nearly 50 percent will remain in Los Angeles County.
“A large percentage of our graduates have selected primary care specialties,” said COM dean Deborah Prothrow-Stith, MD. “That is something that is extremely important to the state, as California is facing a serious shortage of primary care physicians. The shortage is even more acute in many underserved communities in L.A. County, so it’s also gratifying that so many of our students will stay local. ”
CDU’s own residency programs in Psychiatry and Family Medicine welcomed a new cohort of future practitioners this year, with all 14 slots in both programs being successfully filled (six for Psychiatry and eight for Family Medicine, respectively):
Since the return of medical resident training to the University, and by extension the wider South Los Angeles community in July 2018, the programs have sought to turn out physicians who will practice in some of the most medically under-resourced communities of Los Angeles, including Service Planning Area (SPA) 6. The area continues to be federally designated as a Health Professional Shortage Area and/or a Medically Underserved Area by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration.
“Our first group of residents have already had an impact on the community, having served throughout SPA 6 and other communities in Los Angeles,” said Lisa Barkley, MD, director of the family medicine residency program. “We’re excited to continue growing and develop our program by welcoming our second group of residents.”
“I‘m very excited to have matched at CDU,” said Lesly Martinez, MD, an incoming resident in the Family Medicine training program. “The University’s mission statement resonates with me, and I look forward to completing my training here and giving back to the community.”
Match Day, a rite of passage for physicians-in-training, is the culmination of a process that begins in the fall when fourth-year medical students start applying to residency programs through the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP). The NRMP expects this year’s match to be the largest in history, exceeding the more than 43,000 applicants who registered for the 2018 Match and more than 33,000 positions offered last year.