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  • Press Release

    AAMC Statement on Medical School Curriculum

    Media Contacts

    Stuart Heiser, Senior Media Relations Specialist

    AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) President and CEO David J. Skorton, MD, and Chief Academic Officer Alison J. Whelan, MD, issued the following statement on the development of medical school curriculum

    “With an ever increasingly diverse and growing population in our country, the AAMC is dedicated to supporting and developing a health care workforce that is equipped to improve the health of all people in our nation, whether they live in rural or urban areas and regardless of their background. 

    Medical school curriculum is based on evidence, and those developing it use research to help ensure that future doctors learn the skills that will prepare them to treat all patients effectively. Evidence shows that patients do better with a health care team who listens, understands them, and takes their unique experiences into account. Evidence also shows that a person’s varied life experiences and attributes—age, gender, where they were raised, religion, race, disability status, and many others—impact how they prefer to engage with their health care team. For decades, medical schools have taught future physicians to incorporate the skills needed to address these differences to create more effective relationships with their patients.  

    In support of our member medical schools and teaching health systems and hospitals, the AAMC firmly reiterates its commitment to addressing and mitigating the factors that impair effective physician-patient relationships when preparing the future physician workforce.  

    The presence of diversity, equity, and inclusion in medical school curricula is intended to train the next generation of physicians to respond most appropriately to the rapidly diversifying populations that they will serve. Doing so increases the likelihood for better health care and healthy lives for all patients, including individuals who have been historically marginalized by the health care system. 

    Our member medical schools are in the best position to identify how to prepare their students to meet the needs of the physician workforce and must have the autonomy and flexibility to do so. If a medical school recognizes critical educational benefits associated with cultivating student belonging—fostering educational benefits associated with all types of diversity, ensuring equal educational opportunities for their students, and providing instruction on whatever evidence-based knowledge they deem to be fundamental—it is their right and responsibility to pursue those efforts. AAMC member medical schools provide world-renowned exemplary medical education, and the AAMC strongly supports the ability of these institutions to craft their missions and adapt their curricula for the needs of the modern patient population.” 

    The AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) is a nonprofit association dedicated to improving the health of people everywhere through medical education, health care, medical research, and community collaborations. Its members are all 158 U.S. medical schools accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education; 13 accredited Canadian medical schools; approximately 400 academic health systems and teaching hospitals, including Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers; and more than 70 academic societies. Through these institutions and organizations, the AAMC leads and serves America’s medical schools, academic health systems and teaching hospitals, and the millions of individuals across academic medicine, including more than 193,000 full-time faculty members, 96,000 medical students, 153,000 resident physicians, and 60,000 graduate students and postdoctoral researchers in the biomedical sciences. Following a 2022 merger, the Alliance of Academic Health Centers and the Alliance of Academic Health Centers International broadened participation in the AAMC by U.S. and international academic health centers.