I didn’t even know this was a situation.
All the underserved communities out there, and they have the nerve to not have these doctors in the pipeline?
This is absolutely ridiculous.
‘I Am Worth It’: Why Thousands of Doctors in America Can’t Get a Job
Medical schools are producing more graduates, but residency programs haven’t kept up, leaving thousands of young doctors “chronically unmatched” and deep in debt.
By Emma Goldberg
Feb. 19, 2021
Dr. Kristy Cromblin knew that as the descendant of Alabama sharecroppers and the first person in her family to go to college, making it to medical school might seem like an improbable dream. Her parents watched in proud disbelief as she inched closer to that goal, enrolling in a medical school in Barbados and enlisting in the military with plans to serve one day as a flight surgeon.
Then came an unexpected hurdle: A contentious divorce led Dr. Cromblin to take seven years away from medical school to care for her two sons. In 2012, she returned for her final year, excited to complete her exams and apply for residency, the final step in her training.
But no one had told Dr. Cromblin that hospital residency programs, which have been flooded with a rising number of applications in recent years, sometimes use the Electronic Residency Application Service software program to filter out various applications, whether they’re from students with low test scores or from international medical students. Dr. Cromblin had passed all her exams and earned her M.D., but was rejected from 75 programs. In the following years, as she kept applying, she learned that some programs filter out applicants who graduated from medical school more than three years earlier. Her rejection pile kept growing. She is now on unemployment, with $250,000 in student loans.
“There are times you question your worth,” Dr. Cromblin, 43, said. “You wonder if you’re useless. I’ve had to encourage myself over and over: I am worth it. I am useful. I am damn good.”
Dr. Cromblin is one of as many as 10,000 chronically unmatched doctors in the United States, people who graduated from medical school but are consistently rejected from residency programs. The National Resident Matching Program promotes its high match rate, with 94 percent of American medical students matching into residency programs last year on Match Day, which occurs annually on the third Friday in March. But the match rate for Americans who study at medical schools abroad is far lower, with just 61 percent matching into residency spots.
I just got madder and madder reading this story. All this wasted talent. It’s infuriating.