Information Quality for Residency Applicants in Fellowship and Residency Electronic Interactive Database (FREIDA) and Program Websites

Cureus. 2021 Mar 15;13(3):e13900. doi: 10.7759/cureus.13900.


Background Today's residency applicants submit more applications than those in the past. To facilitate holistic review, many program directors have encouraged applicants to submit fewer applications. However, whether programs provide sufficient information to help applicants determine where to apply is unclear. Objective To evaluate the frequency of missing information on residency program websites and in the Fellowship and Residency Electronic Interactive Database (FREIDA). Methods We used FREIDA to identify all categorical pediatric residency programs in the United States. We noted the presence of information programs reported in each FREIDA data field. We compared information available on the program website for consistency with the information in FREIDA and additionally searched for current resident information and any description of the qualities of applicants/residents desired on the program website. Results Two hundred and eleven pediatric residency programs were included in FREIDA. Approximately 25% of programs did not include basic information such as number of first year residents, salary, work hours, or consideration of applicants requiring work visas. Over half of programs did not report minimum licensing examination scores required for interview consideration. Discrepancies between information on program websites and FREIDA related to work visas occurred in 6-8% of programs. While 88% of program websites included information on current residents, only 17% included any description of the applicant attributes sought by the program. Conclusions Many pediatric residency programs do not provide much of the information that applicants need to help determine if a program is a good fit or whether their application is competitive.

Keywords: comlex; freida; international medical graduate; medical education; nrmp match; osteopathic medical graduate; pediatric residency; residency applicant; residency application; usmle.