Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Largest Medical School Class Ever
Who says that no one wants to be a physician? The Association of American Medical Colleges announced that there will be a record 17,800 (approximate) first year medical students this year - a 2.3 percent increase verses last year. There was also an 8.2 percent increase in applicants. Approximately 42,300 individuals applied for medical school in 2006. (Newswise)
The article also says that a handful of schools (image credit) also increased their entering class size verses 2006. I think this is good news for medicine and for the public. Now, to burst this bubble, there is no mention of how many people wash out in the first year and how many actually finish med school after previous record numbers of first year students. Now, those would be interesting numbers to see.
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As i read the beginning of this post, I wondered the same questions you asked at the end... the entry rates may go up, but how many do not finish...MUCH more important figure in my mind.
I always thought a better question would be why are the numbers of available seats so low?
42,300 apply -- only 17,800 get in. How many don't apply because they don't like the odds?
And when you can't get an appointment with a new doctor for a month or more doesn't that -- maybe -- suggest that the market could absorb a lot more doctors?
(Nor is this anything new -- I remember this being the issue -- although I can't vouch for the numbers -- 30 years ago when my classmates were scrambling to find places in medical school.)
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