Background: The percentage of US seniors who chose primary care careers remains well below the nation's future workforce needs. Entrants into family medicine residency programs, along with their colleagues entering other primary care-designated residencies, will compose the primary care workforce of the future.
Methods: Data in this article are collected from the 2013 National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) Main Residency Match and the 2013 American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Medical Education Residency Census. The information provided includes the number of applicants to graduate medical education programs for the 2013--2014 academic year, specialty choice, and trends in specialty selection.
Results: Family medicine residency programs experienced a modest increase in both the overall fill rate as well as the number of positions filled with US seniors through the NRMP in 2013 in comparison to 2012. Other primary care fields, primary care internal medicine positions, pediatrics-primary care, and internal medicine-pediatrics programs also experienced modest increases in 2013. The 2013 NRMP results show a small increase in medical students choosing primary care careers for the fourth year in a row.
Conclusions: Changes in the NRMP Match process in 2013 make a comparison to prior years' Match results difficult. Medical school admission changes, loan repayment, and improved primary care reimbursement may help increase the number of students pursuing family medicine.