The residency bottleneck is an easy issue to explain but a complex problem to solve. In the past, graduating from medical school was essentially a guarantee that an individual would go on to become a doctor. More recently, however, a greater number of students are enrolling in more and more medical schools around the nation, rendering residency positions exceedingly hard to come by.
According to the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP), approximately 5,000 medical school graduates applied to universities and medical facilities with more than 10,000 combined residency opportunities in 1952, which equated to approximately two residencies for every graduate. In 2019, nearly 45,000 applicants competed for approximately 30,500 residencies. This bottleneck has existed for roughly four decades, and has grown increasingly more severe as time has gone on.
In 2018, 1,155 US medical graduates and 4,924 international and foreign medical graduates failed to secure residency positions. In light of the challenges posed by the residency bottleneck, graduates are encouraged to strengthen their CVs however they can, and to seek out any relevant support in securing a residency, such as the services offered by Residents Medical.