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    10 interesting facts about medical residents

    The AAMC annual Report on Residents shows an increasingly diverse cohort of medical residents, trends within specialties, and preferred locations for physicians to practice after residency, among other findings.

    A small group of medical student residents gather around a boardroom table to to meet with their medical team lead. They each have cases out on front of them as they work together collaboratively to discuss each one. They are each dressed professionally in medical scrubs and are listening attentively to the doctor leading the meeting at the head of the table.

    The number of medical residents in the United States and Canada has increased, and so has the percentage of residents from historically underrepresented groups, according to the AAMC 2023 Report on Residents.

    The report, which the AAMC compiles annually, is intended to help residency applicants, program directors, residency specialty organizations, and researchers understand changes in residency trends over time. The publicly available data includes detailed breakdowns by specialty, gender, race/ethnicity, and other characteristics.

    Below, we have compiled some interesting facts from the report about medical residents in 2022-2023:

    Changing demographics

    • In the 2022-2023 academic year — the time frame represented in the report — there were 153,883 residents, continuing the average increase of 5,000 residents each year since 2019.
    • The percentage of women represented across all specialities increased slightly, from 47.3% in the 2021-2022 academic year to 48.3% in 2022-2023.
    • Among residents and fellows with MD degrees, the percentage of those identifying as Hispanic, Latino, or of Spanish Origin inched up from 8.1% to 8.3%; and the percentage of those identifying as Black or African American also increased slightly, from 6.1% to 6.3%. The percentage of residents and fellows with MD degrees identifying as White (47.8%) and Asian (21.3%) decreased, and the percentage of those identifying as American Indian/Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander stayed flat at 0.6% and 0.2%, respectively.
    • Among the larger specialties, women are in the majority for Family Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Pediatrics, and Psychiatry, while men remain the majority in Anesthesiology, Emergency Medicine, Internal Medicine, Radiology, and Surgery. Men make up more than 76% of Neurological Surgery residents, while women account for more than 87% of Obstetrics and Gynecology residents.
    • About 19% of all residents with MDs in 2022-2023 were non-U.S. citizens or non-permanent residents. One-third of all MD-graduate Internal Medicine residents, as well as one-half of MD-graduate Nuclear Medicine residents, were non-U.S. citizens. Of the more than 27,000 residents with DOs in 2022-2023, 11.4% were non-U.S. citizens or non-permanent residents.

    Specialty trends

    • The number of residents in the Internal Medicine subspecialty of Geriatric Medicine has decreased over the last four years, from 229 in 2019-2020 to 204 in 2022-2023.
    • Two of the largest specialties, Emergency Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology, saw an increase in their numbers. The number of Emergency Medicine residents rose by 297, from 8,658 residents in 2021-2022 to 8,955 in 2022-2023; and the number of Obstetrics and Gynecology residents increased by 120, from 5,728 residents in 2021-2022 to 5,848 in 2022-2023.
    • In 2022-2023, first-year Otolaryngology residents had the highest average number of research experiences, at 7.1. First-year Obstetrics and Gynecology residents had the highest average number of volunteer experiences (10.0), and first-year Neurological Surgery residents had the highest average number of abstracts, publications, and presentations (29.1).

    Life post-residency

    • More than half of the residents (57.1%) who completed their residency training between 2013 and 2022 went on to practice in the same state or territory as their residency. The states/territories that retained the highest percentage of residents were California (77.5%), Puerto Rico (74.8%), and Alaska (70.8%). The states/territories with the lowest retention rates were the District of Columbia (38.5%), Delaware (39.2%), and New Hampshire (40.8%).
    • About 20% of physicians who completed residency between 2013 and 2022 currently hold a full-time faculty appointment at a U.S. MD-granting medical school.