Good news and advice about the Residency Match

Dr. Muhammad Shah

Dr. Muhammad Shah

According to the NRMP, The first Main Residency Match® ("the Match") was conducted in 1952 when 10,400 internship positions were available for 6,000 graduating U.S. medical school seniors. Since then the number of positions been increasing each year. In the year 2019, according to NRMP data based on that criterion, the overall position fill rate for the 2019 Match was 95.0 percent. After the 2019 match was processed, 1,768 of the 35,185 positions were unfilled and 1,652 of those positions were placed in the Match Week Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program (SOAP).

2019, was a great year for everyone who applied for the Match. Let's take a look at this data more closely. According to NRMP, The 2019 Match offered 32,194 PGY-1 positions, an increase of 4,901 (18.0%) over 2015. The number of PGY-2 (advanced and physician) positions increased by 72 (2.4%). The combined increase of PGY-1 and PGY-2 positions was 4,973 (16.5%) over 2015.

Specialties with at least 10 positions in the Match and 100 percent fill rates: 

  • Medicine-Emergency 

  • Medicine Medicine-Psychiatry

  • Interventional Radiology (categorical and advanced) 

  • Otolaryngology 

  • Peds/Psych/Child Psych 

  • Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation (categorical) 

  •  Plastic Surgery 

  •  Psychiatry-Family Medicine 

  •  Surgery 

  •  Thoracic Surgery

Specialties with at least 10 positions in the Match that filled at least 90 percent by U.S. seniors: 

  • Psychiatry-Family Medicine (categorical): 100 percent 

  • Peds/Psych/Child Psych: 95.2 percent 

  • Otolaryngology: 93.9 percent 

  • Plastic Surgery: 91.9 percent 

  • Thoracic Surgery: 91:9 percent 

  • Neurological Surgery: 91.8 percent 

  • Orthopedic Surgery: 91.8 percent

The purpose of sharing this data is to show you the possibility of getting a match is much higher than ever before; with your hard work and dedication. Never give up on your dream.

IMGs who are successful in matching to their preferred specialty is more likely to:

  • Rank more programs within their preferred specialty

  • Have higher USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 CK scores

  • Be U.S. citizens

  • A good letter of recommendation

  • Apply in every possible US state

  • Gain clinical experience in the programs you will apply 

Advices for Match applicants:

  • Rank all of the programs you really want to match, without regard to your estimate of your chances with those programs.

  • Include a mix of both highly competitive and less competitive programs within your chosen specialty.

  • Include all of the programs on your list where the program has expressed an interest in you.

  • Include all of your qualifications in your application.