Postinterview communication between military residency applicants and training programs

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Military Medicine








Purpose: Each year military medical students participate in a separate, military match culminating with the Joint Services Graduate Medical Education Selection Board (JSGMESB). Prior studies have explored postinterview communication that occurs during the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP), but not during the JSGMESB. We examined the frequency and nature of communication during the JSGMESB and compared it with the NRMP. Methods: Cross-sectional survey study of senior students conducted at Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU) and seven civilian U.S. medical schools during March to May 2010. Respondents answered questions regarding communication with residency programs during the match. Results: Significantly fewer USU respondents communicated with programs compared with the civilian cohort (54.1% vs. 86.4%, p < 0.01). Specific inquiries regarding rank order were more commonly experienced by USU respondents compared with civilians (17.5% vs. 4.8%, p = 0.02). USU respondents found postinterview communication both helpful (41.3%) and stressful (41.3%). 11.1% of USU respondents indicated that they moved a program higher on their final rank lists because of further communication with these programs. Conclusions: Postinterview communication during the JSGMESB process is less common and less stressful than that reported in the NRMP. USU respondents are more likely to be asked directly about their rank list and occasionally do change their lists. Uniform guidance mirroring the NRMP's dealing with direct inquiries about rank lists could potentially improve the process. © Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S. All rights reserved.

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