Primary care program graduates more likely to select generalist career path

December 20, 2012

Far fewer students are pursuing general medical studies today than when internal medicine primary care programs were created in the 1970s, but internal medical students in primary care programs are still more likely to enter general internal medicine practices than students in categorical programs, according to a new study published by researchers from the Mayo Clinic.

Far fewer students are pursuing general medical studies today than when internal medicine primary care programs were created in the 1970s, but internal medical students in primary care programs are still more likely to enter general internal medicine practices than students in categorical programs, according to a new study published by researchers from the Mayo Clinic.

General medicine career plans accounted for about 90% of primary care program graduates shortly after such programs were formed in the 1970s, but only 20% to 25% of internal medicine residency graduates pursue general medical careers today, according to the study.

All in all, though, the study notes that nearly 40% of students in primary care programs planned general internal medicine careers, compared with just 20% of their peers in categorical programs. Women and students from the United States also were more likely to report general internal medicine career plans, according to the report.

The full study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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