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Record Number of Med School Grads Choosing Family Medicine

Seventh consecutive year of increase, but supply still doesn't meet demand for family doctors

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MONDAY, March 28, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For the seventh consecutive year, the number of students selecting family medicine has increased, reaching a record of 3,105 graduating medical students choosing family medicine in 2016, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

The 2016 match saw 3,105 graduating medical students chose family medicine in the National Resident Matching Program, representing an increase of 45 medical students compared with 2015. This is the seventh consecutive year that the number of students choosing family medicine increased. However, the rate of increase is not enough to meet demand.

U.S. seniors accounted for 48 percent of the family medicine positions filled, with an increase of 59 U.S. graduates compared with 2015. Nearly 400 more U.S. seniors matched into family medicine compared with 2009. The fill rate of slots offered by family medicine residency programs was 95.2 percent, up from 95.1 percent in 2015.

"The bump up this year is the largest in the last several years for family medicine," Stan Kozakowski, M.D., director of the AAFP Medical Education Division, said in a statement. "While this news is heartening and a step in the right direction, we should not be satisfied with these rather modest results. Far too few students are choosing family medicine to meet the needs of our nation."

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