Internal Medicine Program Directors' Perceptions of the "All In" Match Rule: A Cross-Sectional Survey.

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BACKGROUND: Since 2013, the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) has asked all programs to declare themselves to be "all in" or "all out" for the NRMP. Before this rule was enacted, program directors who were surveyed expressed concerns about what they anticipated with the change, including resources for increased applications and potential delays with residency start times.

OBJECTIVE: This study investigated the positive and negative effects of the rule change on recruiting seen from the perspective of internal medicine (IM) program directors.

METHODS: In this mixed model cross-sectional survey, Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education-accredited IM program directors were surveyed regarding their impressions of the impact of the policy change. Data were aggregated using constant comparative analysis.

RESULTS: A total of 127 of 396 (32%) IM program directors responded, and 122 of 127 (96%) identified their program as "all in." A total of 110 respondents expressed impressions of the rule change, with 48% (53 of 111) reporting positive responses, 28% (31 of 111) neutral responses, and 24% (27 of 111) negative responses. Programs with higher percentages of visa-holding residents had lower positive responses (37% [22 of 60] versus 61% [31 of 51]). Resident quality was felt to be unchanged or improved by most program directors (93%, 103 of 111), yet 24% (27 of 112) reported increases in delayed start times for visa-holding residents. Qualitative analysis identified increased fairness, at the expense of an increase in program resources as a result of the change.

CONCLUSIONS: A slight majority of residency programs reported a neutral or negative impression of the rule change. Since the rule change, program directors noted increased application volume and delayed residency starts for visa-holding residents.

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J Grad Med Educ





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