Envelopes revealing the number of new doctors who will train in Louisiana will be opened at the LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine Match Day Ceremony on March 16 at 11 a.m. at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome St. Charles Room (enter through Gate H). It is the culmination of months of interviewing for graduating medical students with academic health centers and hospitals that have residency programs. The students list their choices for residency programs, and the academic health centers and hospitals list their choices of students to fill them. All selections are fed into a computer, and “matches” are made. Match Day is when the students and their families find out where they matched and where they will go to complete their graduate medical education.
A residency program is a period of education in a chosen specialty that physicians undergo after they graduate from medical school. Most residency programs last from three to seven years, during which residents care for patients under the supervision of physician faculty and participate in educational and research activities. When physicians graduate from a residency program, they are eligible to take their board certification examinations and begin practicing independently. Residency programs are sponsored by teaching hospitals, academic medical centers, healthcare systems, and other institutions.
Since statistics show that the majority of physicians remain in the communities and set up practice where they’ve done their residencies, Match Day also reveals important information about the supply and types of physicians the New Orleans area and the state of Louisiana will have. The supply of physicians practicing here not only affects access to care, but also local economies and the larger state economy. LSU Health New Orleans educates the majority of Louisiana’s physicians.
The National Resident Matching Program was established in 1952 to provide an orderly and fair mechanism to match the preferences of applicants for U.S. residency positions with residency program choices of applicants. The program provides a common time for the announcement of the appointments, as well as an agreement for programs and applicants to honor the commitment to offer and accept an appointment, if a match results.
Residency programs begin on July 1, 2018.