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selecting more than one specialty

Discussion in 'Military Medicine' started by njaqua, Apr 21, 2007.

  1. njaqua

    njaqua 10+ Year Member

    Is there any disadvantage/advantage to selecting different specialties in the Army match? That is, ranking first three EM, then second choice maybe FM or IM for last two or so, for example? Is it really unlikely to get a spot if you don't rotate at the institution (the backup choices)? I don't know if this is common or not, as I don't know much about the match process. Would the second choices see your first specialty choice and know you are not that interested and using them as a backup?
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    BOHICA-FIGMO Belt-fed Physician 10+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2004
    High and right
    I think most people will tell you that is a very very bad move.
  4. USAF MD '05

    USAF MD '05 Just another dumb ER doc. 7+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2004
    across the pond
    If you do this, you are screwed if you are looking at something competitive like EM. EM has more applicants than it can handle while FP/IM are scrounging for bodies. If they see that you are willing to do either, you can guess what you will match into. If you are truly OK with doing something else, then expect to do the less competitive one. Otherwise DO NOT DO THIS!! That is all.
  5. Re3iRtH

    Re3iRtH Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 27, 2006
    On a related note, there are only 4 rads spots in the army.

    So if you get to pick five, can you do 4 rads + neurosurgery,
    or 4 rads + rad onc, or 3 rads + gen surg + urology etc.

    Anyone have an insight on this?
  6. njaqua

    njaqua 10+ Year Member

    So if someone is only willing to do EM, e.g., where the Army only has i believe 3 spots, would your last two be civilian deferment?
  7. BigNavyPedsGuy

    BigNavyPedsGuy Junior Member 10+ Year Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    So, I was in a similar situation with Navy Peds (19 spots, 30+ applicants). And I was told multiple times to have a backup plan. So, I interviewed for transitional year spots as well. And I ranked them after the peds spots. However, I think my situation is a bit different, b/c peds doesn't strictly use a points system. I think they go to a room by themselves and do it fantasy draft style. I'm really not sure what voodoo goes into it.

    IOW you'll need some sort of backup plan, and when the time comes, program directors and/or attendings can actually be a great source of advice.
  8. GMO2003

    GMO2003 Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Dec 27, 2003
    It's been awhile since I applied to military GME. However, it was to my understanding that you could NOT apply to more than one specialty. The online application only lists 1specialty goal and that was it. If your specialty didn't have 5 choices available, you had to fill in the rest with transitional year, IM, or general surgery spots...the only time you were given the opportunity for another specialty was if you failed to match and were offered a different specialty by the JSGMEB

    USAFGMODOC Attending physician 7+ Year Member

    Sep 17, 2005
    Not a good idea to apply to more than 1 residency-- reason, if you are applying for anything competative, you will not be taken seriously and you'll likely be given the second choice. If you try to "game" the system and put 2 competative programs (ortho and rads for instance), you'll likely get neither because in the GME's mind, you seem to have indecision...

    My 2 cents, but I know this to be true as I initially put rads with FP as my 2nd choice and the GME lady called me to tell me it wasn't a good idea to do that--- likely I'd match FP. I deleted FP and matched RADS and I'm so happy she called me!

  10. njaqua

    njaqua 10+ Year Member

    Were there 5 Rads spots you could list? If not, what did you list for the remaining spots?
  11. USAF MD '05

    USAF MD '05 Just another dumb ER doc. 7+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2004
    across the pond
    Yes, absolutely. Steve
  12. colbgw02

    colbgw02 Delightfully Tacky 10+ Year Member

    For the Army, this is absolutely true. You are required to put down at least 5 choices in the specialty of your choice, which, depending on your specialty, can be accomplished in a number of different ways. You cannot mix and match specialties in the Army match.

    1) Your specialty has 5+ Army programs - simple, just rank them in order of preference.

    2) Your specialty has less than 5 programs, but it has multiple internships that feed into a single categorical program - the slots for the different transitional programs are actually listed separately. For example, the WRAMC radiology program has interns that feed in from both WRAMC and EAMC. Those two internships are listed independently, so if you wanted to be at WRAMC for radiology, your match list might look like this: 1) WRAMC, 2) EAMC, 3) BAMC, 4) WBAMC (feeds to BAMC), 5) MAMC, and 6) TAMC.

    3) Your specialty has less than 5 programs, period - you list all program available and then fill in the balance with transitional internship programs (that aren't preselected for a categorical residency).

    In the Army, the civilian deferment is a separate process. Listing deferment in your rank order list is not an option.
  13. USAF MD '05

    USAF MD '05 Just another dumb ER doc. 7+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2004
    across the pond
    In the good 'ol USAF, we hand fill out our forms, and there is a slot for second choice specialty. Leave it blank. Steve
  14. AFDuck

    AFDuck 7+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2007
    Could people with experience with the USAF match please elaborate on their ways of ranking programs? Has anyone tried ranking 2 different specialties? Thanks
  15. 46&2

    46&2 Member 10+ Year Member

    May 8, 2004
    As USAF MD'05 pointed out, it's very easy to apply to two different specialties.

    When you download the JSGMESB application in late summer, you have two separate forms to rank a primary specialty and a second choice. For either, you rank deferred and any AF base offering your specialty.

    There is a second choice form where you can rank another specialty and rank order your choice of base/deferrment. It is VERY dangerous to rank a non-competitive specialty as your second choice, especially if you're going for something competitive in the military (i.e. EM, rads, even ob/gyn).

    "It is not mandatory to list a second choice. Applicants should make sure they will be equally as happy in a second choice of specialties as they would be in their first choice before completing this form. Remember, all board decisions are final and if selected for the second choice, individuals may not decline training after the selection board. If selected for a full residency, individuals most complete a minimum of one year of traning the selected specialty."

    You can choose not to fill out the second choice form, either, which I highly recommend if your first choice is your dream field. I ranked a second choice, but it was neurosurgery so I figured I had a snowball's chance of getting that.

    As others have noted, you may want a particular specialty (say Ob/Gyn) and still get hosed based on your second choice. You may do Ob/Gyn rotations at every base, get letters of recommendation from all Ob/Gyns, etc. You may send your application only to Ob/Gyn military programs. If you put family medicine as a second option, you're stilly in serious danger of being an FP. It happened to a good, highly competent friend of mine who even had prior military experience.

    If you want to a flight surgeon, don't even worry about this stuff, tell them you only want a one year training slot as your first choice. They even state that on the form.

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