, Volume 27, Issue 4, pp 269-276
Date: 10 Jan 2014

Recent Trends in Psychiatry Residency Workforce With Special Reference to International Medical Graduates

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Objective: This study examines trends in the supply, distribution, and demographics of psychiatry residents during the 1990s. It evaluates the extent to which the predicted downsizing of psychiatry residency training programs actually occurred and how it affected training programs of different sizes and locations. Method: Data for this study were obtained from the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Annual Survey of Graduate Medical Education (GME) Programs, the AMA GME directory, and the APA Graduate Medical Census. The study compares the roles played by international medical graduates (IMGs) in contrast to U.S. medical graduates (USMGs) in these trends. Results: There was a significant decline in the number of residents during the years studied. The median training program size also decreased. International medical graduates found broad acceptance in training programs of all locations and sizes, including medical school based programs. Implications of the findings are discussed regarding the impact of current graduate medical education (GME) and immigration policies on future workforce patterns. Conclusion: The field will have to decide whether it can afford anymore residency downsizing in light of emerging evidence of a shortage of psychiatrists.

The author thanks Joel Yager, M.D. and Larry Faulkner, M.D. for reading the paper and making suggestions and Arthur Meinzer, Ph.D. for his statistical analysis.