That number could still inch higher as those students who didn't match on the official match day of Feb. 10 enter what is known as “the scramble”—an electronic post-match tool for pairing programs and trainees through July.
“As the number of future physicians choosing to apply to and attend osteopathic medical schools continues to grow, it is encouraging to also see a steady increase in the number of recent graduates going into primary care,” AOA President Dr. Norman Vinn said in a news release.
Overall, primary care accounted for more than half of this year's placements. In addition to family medicine, that includes those matching to internal medicine, pediatrics and obstetrics/gynecology. All of these specialties were up for 2014, with pediatrics seeing the greatest jump—an increase of 33% to 61 placements this year. Placements to internal medicine residencies were up 9% and OB-GYN rose 7%.
Osteopathic training programs exist for the four primary-care specialties and more than 25 other specialties and subspecialties. After adding three new osteopathic medical schools last fall, there are now 29 across the U.S., educating more than 21,000 osteopathic medical students.
Osteopaths, like their medical doctor counterparts, are licensed physicians who complete four years of medical education followed by an internship or residency program that usually lasts anywhere from three to eight years. Osteopathic physicians also receive additional training that focuses on the musculoskeletal system and how illness or injury in one part of the body affects another.
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