Monday, March 19, 2007

The Real March Madness

Forget bracketology and Dickie V's Final Four-cast - this madness is for real. Real jobs, real patients, real pain and suffering in the near future as the dreaded internship year begins to come into focus.
Monday, March 19th was a huge day for more than 20,000 medical students across the U.S. These future physicians learned at which hospitals around the United States they would be tortured for the next 3 to 8 years.
All the pictures we find on Google Images are of people hugging and smiling and laughing so we want to let those of you who are not doing those things that it is okay and you will be fine. The majority of applicants do not get their 1st choice and still end up doing wonderful things. I've always thought that it would be an interesting study to survey each specialties' thought leadrers to see how they fared in the The Match.
If you did not get your first pick or even your third pick, take it form us: it all works out in the end. What you thought was the best thing as a MS4 may not really be the best thing as a PGY-4,5 or 8. Residency, like everything else in medical training (and in life is what you put into it and you will find good and bad people whereever you go. If it turns out that you hate your instituion after a full year, you can always change.

So congratulations to all of you newly minted interns and let us be the first to inform you that there are some very psyched soon-to-be-PGY-2's ready to exert some influence.
Unfortunately more than 6,500 students, mostly at schools based outside of the United States got the news that they did not match earlier in the week. They were forced to suffer through the aptly named "Scramble" where the unmatched call, e-mail, and beg programs with unfilled vacancies to accept them - hardly a prideful moment for students who have worked so hard. Some succeed, but the process is pure torture regardless and seems quite antiquated considering the current state of technology and the fact that we are no longer scribbling on rock tablets.

Remember one thing, newly minted residents: the field you have chosen may look very different 18 months from now. If that should happen, you CAN change your specialty. Have the courage of your convictions. You can check out OpenSpots and have a look-see. You will not be alone. Chances are, you will stay in your specialty, you just have to get through the grueling years of long hours and no respect from higher-ups, nurses and patients. But remember, your mother loves you no matter what!
Now go out, get drunk, and play doctor!

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