okayplayer

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I have extensively searched (>2 hrs worth this morning) on both SDN and the NRMP website and cannot find an answer to the exact scenario I am going through. Sorry for the confusion on my end. This whole process is very new to me.

Here's all the info. I am doing couples match with my girlfriend. We are both DO students and are applying to the allopathic match. She is applying to IM programs for residency (ie. the normal 3 year program). Straight forward and easy on her end.

I am applying to anesthesia. Some of the programs are categorical. Those should be easy to pair up with the same city she ends up in. The majority of my programs, however, are advanced. For these, I would like to apply to a prelim IM year *in the same city my GF matches IM and I match my advanced anesthesia.* I am unsure how this works. According to these links

http://www.nrmp.org/res_match/special_part/ind_app/couples.html
http://www.nrmp.org/res_match/userguide/2009_applicant.pdf

it looks like the couples match algorithm does not take into account supplemental rank lists (I presume this means my prelim IM list). I am quite confused.

Basically here is what I would like to do:

1. gf: IM-NYC, me: ANES-categ-NYC
2. gf: IM-NYC, me: ANES-adv-NYC + IM-prelim-NYC

etc. for many cities.

In order to increase our odds of a successful couples match we are applying to roughly 60 programs each and will only attend interviews if the other has an interview in the same city. The problem is, it appears to me that if we want all four years to be together, the only way is if I match into a categorical anesthesia program, because I can't have a separate linked prelim year for each city (ie. if she's in Chicago for IM and I'm in Chicago for adv anesthesia, I have a list of 3 prelim IM programs in Chicago, and do this for each city we apply). Is this correct?

I hope this makes sense, I am quite confused.

Thanks
 

Ludicolo

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You aren’t confused, you’ve got it right. The couples match does not link prelim years. So there’s a chance that you may need to spend your intern year apart from your SO. Your scenario above – ranking categorical anesthesia programs as well as advanced programs w/ geographically restricted prelims - is the best way to ensure all 4 years together. Although what happens when she finishes her 3 year IM residency and you are in your final year of Anesthesia is another matter...

This is another reason why applying to large cities is important for couples, especially if one of their specialties requires a prelim year. You'll have a larger selection of both advanced and prelim programs to choose from. The downside is you have to interview at and rank all of those programs. This can get tiring and expensive.

Here’s something that you should understand: Your SROLs of prelims will naturally be smaller for each advanced program – 2-3 per city. You therefore run a slightly higher risk of not matching and having to scramble for a prelim.
 
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okayplayer

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This is my point of confusion. Can I have a seperate supplemental list for prelims in EACH city I want to rank advanced programs, or just one supplemental ROL total?
 

Ludicolo

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This is my point of confusion. Can I have a seperate supplemental list for prelims in EACH city I want to rank advanced programs, or just one supplemental ROL total?
OK to have separate lists. For each advanced program, you submit a SROL linked to that program. You can have one list of all of your NYC prelim programs - linked to each of your NYC advanced programs. You can have an entirely different list for your Chicago programs.
 
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okayplayer

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Thanks, that's exactly what I needed to know (that must have been buried somewhere in my rambling question initially).
 

hsans23

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Hi guys. I am in a very similar situation. I am a girl applying IM and my boyfriend is applying anesthesia. It was good to get the clarification on the prelim/advanced info.

Some residents told me the other day something that I think is untrue and wanted to check with the SDN experts. They said that couples match "always hurts the applicant applying to the more competitive specialty" (i.e. anesthesia i guess in this case tho i am applying to higher tier IM programs primarily) - they explained that this was the case because "the program won't want to deal with it" meaning couples match.

Any truth to this? And isn't it the case that the match/programs dont even need to know you are doing couples if you don't check that box on ERAS?

Please assist!! Thanks :) Sorry okayplayer for hijacking ur thread ;)
 

aProgDirector

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Hi guys. I am in a very similar situation. I am a girl applying IM and my boyfriend is applying anesthesia. It was good to get the clarification on the prelim/advanced info.

Some residents told me the other day something that I think is untrue and wanted to check with the SDN experts. They said that couples match "always hurts the applicant applying to the more competitive specialty" (i.e. anesthesia i guess in this case tho i am applying to higher tier IM programs primarily) - they explained that this was the case because "the program won't want to deal with it" meaning couples match.

Any truth to this? And isn't it the case that the match/programs dont even need to know you are doing couples if you don't check that box on ERAS?

Please assist!! Thanks :) Sorry okayplayer for hijacking ur thread ;)
This is not true for several reasons:

1. First, it's no big deal to "deal with" as a program. A few programs attempt to align schedules for couples, but not most -- and rarely if you are in different institutions.

2. You don't need to announce, to anyone, that you are couples matching. If you're worried about it, just don't mention it.

3. The couples match does not "hurt" you mathematically as long as you complete your match list correctly. See this thread.
 

hsans23

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aProgDirector - THANK YOU. Your advice is so helpful and means alot. I have learned to pay attention to whose advice you are receiving, and yours is pure gold. Thanks again.

You have helped enough already and I can do a search as I'm sure this has been discussed already - - but I am wondering if there is any situations in which couples would decide to NOT announce - - In my personal situation I am a competitive medicine applicant applying to top tier/middle tier programs and my sig other is an average anesthesia applicant applying quite broadly.

Thanks again :)
 

aProgDirector

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aProgDirector - THANK YOU. Your advice is so helpful and means alot. I have learned to pay attention to whose advice you are receiving, and yours is pure gold. Thanks again.

You have helped enough already and I can do a search as I'm sure this has been discussed already - - but I am wondering if there is any situations in which couples would decide to NOT announce - - In my personal situation I am a competitive medicine applicant applying to top tier/middle tier programs and my sig other is an average anesthesia applicant applying quite broadly.

Thanks again :)
1. Paranoia
2. Only one of you gets an offer from a certain program. Perhaps they'll decide your are "less serious" about that program and hence rank you lower.

Mostly, I do not think it does much harm, but I'm "pro family" and maybe someone else is "anti family"?