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Minerva Surgery 2022 August;77(4):341-7

DOI: 10.23736/S2724-5691.21.09163-2


language: English

Distribution of international medical graduates across USA surgical training programs: a descriptive cross-sectional study

Hussein H. KHACHFE 1, 2, 3, Nazih A. BIZRI 4, Hussein A. BAYDOUN 1, Rudy EL-ASMAR 5, Salem AL HARTHI 6, Amal SUHOOL 6, Ali H. HALLAL 6, Faek R. JAMALI 6

1 Department of Surgery, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 2 Division of GI Surgical Oncology, UPMC Pancreatic Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 3 UPMC Cancer Pavilion, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; 4 Faculty of Medicine, University of Balamand, Beirut, Lebanon; 5 Department of Surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA; 6 Division of General Surgery, Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City, Mayo Clinic, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

BACKGROUND: International medical graduates (IMGs) have been a critical part of the USA healthcare in the past 30 years, especially in small rural and poor counties. However, little to no publications are present on the distribution of these IMGs across general surgery residency programs.
METHODS: All freely accessible information on current residents in accredited general surgery residency programs within the USA with at least a 5-year history was explored for IMGs in the current roster using the AMA residency and fellowship database in 2020. Demographic and geographic data were summarized.
RESULTS: A total of 230 general surgery residency program were included. Programs were distributed among 46 (92%) states. Of a total 6304 categorical general surgery residents, 573 (9%) were IMGs. Florida (USA) had the highest total number of current IMG general surgery residents with 64. The highest percentage of current IMG residents was found in Maryland (USA) with 31%. IMGs obtained their medical degrees from 76 different countries worldwide. Grenada was the country with the highest origin of IMGs with 77 residents. Central/North America had the highest origin of IMGs with 217 (38%).
CONCLUSIONS: IMGs make up a small portion of current general surgery residents in USA programs. Some states host more IMGs than others. Particular countries have contributed more IMGs than others. More research is needed to the challenges facing IMGs and come up with novel solutions for them.

KEY WORDS: Foreign medical graduates; General surgery; Surgical procedures, operative

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