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Benchmarks of Value – February 20, 2013

February 20, 2013

Hello everybody:

Fourth-year College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific students engaged in a process that sounded like a game last week, but it was a game whose outcome will have far-reaching effects on their lives and on the future of health care.

February 11 marked the American Osteopathic Association’s (AOA) Match Day, where fourth-year students found out what residency they will attend after graduation this May. The event is not a one-day happening, but rather the result of weeks and months of planning and working with COMP advisers to put students in the best possible position to get the residencies they desire.

The February 11 match was not the only one available, although it is the match exclusively for osteopathic graduates. On March 11, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) will post its matches, which include allopathic and osteopathic residencies.

Last week, 76 fourth-year COMP students matched with a program of their choice through AOA. Another 130 opted to participate in ACGME’s match next month. Of the 26 students who did not match in the AOA process, 13 plan to participate in the ACGME match, while eight more found positions through the scramble portion of the process. Another five are either in negotiation with residency programs or have not announced their plans.

This is an excellent result for the first wave of matches, and the students and their advisers are to be commended. Hours of hard work went into coming up with rank orders of possible residencies for each student, and for 76 of them – a full third of the Class of 2013 – to get a match is outstanding, and underscores the outstanding quality of COMP students and those throughout our University.

Just two years from now, in 2015, the AOA and ACGME matches are scheduled to be combined in a unified accreditation for graduate medical education programs across the U.S. In addition to taking some of the stress out of the process for fourth-years, this unification of systems will provide physicians with a uniform path of preparation of practice, and will ensure that evaluation and accountability for residents’ training is consistent across the country.

In the meantime, though – one Match Day down, and another in the offing! Congratulations to the matched fourth-year students in COMP, and good luck to those looking forward to next month’s big day.

As always, I welcome your feedback on this topic and any others as we discuss WesternU’s Benchmarks of Value, and our plans. Please e-mail me with your thoughts at ppumerantz@westernu.edu, and feel free to share this message with your family and friends.

My best to you all,