Dermatology is a competitive field for applicants pursuing a residency, and many applicants turn to dedicated research years to try and increase their competitiveness. Our study aimed to determine the financial costs of a research year and uncover how the costs of a research year vary for different demographic groups. We administered an anonymous survey through various dermatology listservs and social media platforms to prior, current, and future dermatology applicants who had completed a research fellowship during or after medical school. We found the median total fellowship cost ($26,443.20) was higher than the median fellowship income ($23,625.00). Furthermore, we found minority respondents had significantly lower total income, lower fellowship income, and higher net fellowship cost (p<0.05). Ninety participants completed surveys, and over half reported their research year as financially stressful. The majority did state that if given the opportunity, they would choose to do their research year again. Given the overall high costs of research years and the disparity in funding of these years, steps should be taken to address the disparities in fellowship funding or de-emphasize the importance of research fellowships in the dermatology residency selection process.
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Koblinski, J.E., Greene, A., Quillen, J.K. et al. Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Dermatology Research Fellowship Funding. J. Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40615-023-01757-5