First 'single match' in history results in largest residency Match Day ever

Match Day 2020 was historic, not only because it was the largest on record, but also because it was the first "single match," which means it was the first time that all allopathic (MD) and osteopathic (DO) applicants participated in one matching program, according to the National Resident Matching Program.

The National Resident Matching Program operates the residency program application system. On Match Day, which takes place in March each year, U.S. medical students learn where they will be doing their residencies. Students can match into first-year and second-year residency positions.

This year, a record 40,084, applicants submitted program choices for 37,256 positions, the largest number of positions ever offered via the National Resident Matching Program.

Of 19,326 MD students who applied for residency positions, 93.7 percent or 18,108 applicants, matched into a first-year program.

Of 6,581 DO medical students who applied for residency positions, 90.7 percent or 5,968 applicants, matched into a first-year program.

Residency applicants also included U.S. citizens and non-citizens who graduated from international medical schools.

This was also the first year that applicants submitted program choices via a single system, whether they graduated from allopathic or osteopathic medical schools. Previously, the American Osteopathic Association operated a residency program application system for osteopathic students, which ended last year.

The number of available first-year positions was 34,266, a 6.4 percent increase from the number of available positions in 2019.

Of the 34,266 positions available for first-year residents, 17,135 were for primary care specialties such as family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics.

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