3 year vs 4 year EM programs??

Discussion in 'Emergency Medicine' started by margaritaboy, Apr 16, 2003.

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  1. margaritaboy

    margaritaboy Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Apr 13, 2003
    The Desert
    I've noticed that in addition to the 96 or so three-year EM programs, there are also 16 four-year programs (PGY1-PGY4). Is there any benefit to doing a four-year program as opposed to a three-year program? Are you just prolonging the agony of residency another year?

    There are 16 other programs that run PGY2-PGY4. Is this primarily for people who realize during their internship that they want to switch specialties? Or am I missing the big picture?

    You thoughts and opinions, please, ladies and gents.

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  3. DocWagner

    DocWagner Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 1, 2002
  4. Wrangler

    Wrangler Member 7+ Year Member

    Mar 19, 2003
    I took the approach of "finding the right fit" and interviewed at both 3 and 4 year programs, but did not consider any 2-3 year programs b/c I did not want to do a transitional year.
    3 year programs are adequete for training and 3 years + 1 year as an attending (4 years total) puts you ahead of a 4 year graduate in clinical skills, plus adds a few grand to you bank account. 4 year programs seem to give you the advantange in research and teaching institutions b/c you have more time to develop projects and get involved in the field.
    Alot of 4 year programs persist in areas that need cheap labor to move patients (some medical and surgical groups tell me that they have to hire 4 NP's or PA's to replace each resident with the new work hour limits).
    2-3 year programs get an advantage for themselves in that their residents already know the basics when they arrive so they have to teach them less, though it seems that at many programs they end up redoing alot of their 1st year. These positions are not "reserved" and most go in the match 1 year in advance as applicants also match in 1 year transitional programs.

    ps-Most 4 year programs seem to like to hear that 4 years are superior to 3 years of residency at interviews.

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