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AAMCNews top stories of 2019

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Our top 10 news stories of 2019

December 29, 2019

From the closure of Hahnemann University Hospital to new insights into why so many women leave medicine early in their careers, here are the top 10 news stories of 2019.

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Medical school in 3 years. The pros and cons of making the USMLE pass/fail. New research into the doctor shortage and, in particular, the shortage of surgeons. These and other top AAMCNews stories of 2019 offer a glimpse into some of the most pressing issues facing students, residents, and faculty at our nation’s medical schools and teaching hospitals.

In case you missed them, here are our 10 most-read stories of the year:

Female doctor walks down a hospital hallway.

1. Why women leave medicine

Research shows that almost 40% of women physicians go part-time or leave medicine altogether within six years of completing their residencies. Here’s what’s behind the early exodus — and what pioneering institutions are doing to entice more women to stay.


 

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2. New findings confirm predictions on physician shortage

In April, the AAMC released its annual report on physician supply and demand in the United States. The report shows that the U.S. could see a shortage of up to 122,000 physicians by 2032, impacting patient care across the nation.


 

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3. What happens when a teaching hospital closes?

When Hahnemann University Hospital in Philadelphia announced in June that it was filing for bankruptcy, it set in motion a chain of events that affected everyone from students and residents to program directors, faculty, and patients. Here’s how the closure affected not only the 550 trainees displaced, but the academic medicine community at large.

 

people in front of computer monitors

4. Should the USMLE be pass/fail?

USMLE Step 1 scores get far more weight than they deserve in the residency selection process, experts say, and that’s harming students. Now for the first time, key stakeholders have come together to reform USMLE — and the entire selection process.


 

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5. Med school in 3 years: Is this the future of medical education?

Accelerated programs cut student debt and produce grads faster to address physician shortages. But some worry they might sacrifice valuable learning and professional development.


 

Protesters holding signs while sitting down at a rally in support of DREAMers

6. DACA students risk everything to become doctors

Nearly 200 undocumented students and residents are training in U.S. medical schools and teaching hospitals. AAMCNews talked to 10 DACA medical students and residents about their journeys to medical school, the challenges they faced as the undocumented children of immigrants, and the passion that drives them to pursue a career in medicine despite tremendous obstacles.

 

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7. So you’ve matched: Now what? 9 things all residents should know

Value your team. Ask for help. Remember that it gets better. Medical school deans and teaching hospital CEOs offer their best advice for new residents.



 

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8. SWAT doctors

They rush into active shooter scenes and other unimaginably dangerous situations. What it's like to train and serve as a physician on a special operations team.



 

A female resident raises her hand to ask a question in class.

9. How well does the MCAT®  exam predict success in medical school?

Researchers spent years studying thousands of students to assess the new MCAT® exam. Here are some of their key — and surprising — discoveries.



 

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10. Desperately seeking surgeons

By 2032, the United States will lack as many as 23,000 surgeons. That will have a dramatic impact given a growing, aging population with increasingly complex health needs.

 

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