Schools Turning Out Most Primary Care Residents

March 31, 2014
Laura Joszt

With a large projected shortage, primary care physicians are in high demand and some medical schools are better at turning out residents in the specialty than others.

With a large projected shortage, primary care physicians are in high demand and some medical schools are better at turning out residents in the specialty than others.

While medical school enrollment has been on track to grow by 30% from 2002 to 2017 in order to address the expected 90,000 physician shortage by 2020 as estimated by the Association of American Medical Colleges, this steep growth has been a double-edged sword. While enrollment has grown quickly, it is outpacing open residency positions.

As part of US News and World Report’s annual graduate school ranking (see America’s Top Medical Schools), the site listed the medical schools with the most graduates entering primary care specialties.

While some of the schools are, unsurprisingly, among the best primary care schools in the nation, it’s not the case for all of them. The top-ranked primary care school, the University of Washington, did not make the top 10 for turning out the most residents going into primary care specialties. Although more than half (53%) of residents did go into primary care.

Here are the 10 schools best at turning out primary care residents.

10. Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine—Virginia and Carolinas

Blacksburg, Virginia

Primary care graduates: 60.6%

Tuition and fees: $40,600

Enrollment: 1,217

Spartanburg, SC, home of the branch Carolinas Campus

Neither the ranking for research nor primary care was published by US News, but 90% of graduates who applied to residency programs were admitted to their first choice.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopaedic surgery, pediatrics, psychiatry, and general surgery.

9. University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Primary care graduates: 61%

Tuition and fees: $19,446 (in-state students) and $46,325 (out-of-state students)

Enrollment: 811

University of North Carolina Hospitals

Ranked second overall for best primary care school and 22 for best research, UNC also ranked well in 3 other specialties: AIDS (8), family medicine (2), and rural medicine (6).

The most popular resident and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, pediatric internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopaedic surgery, pediatrics, psychiatry, and general surgery.

8. University of Nebraska Medical Center

Omaha, Nebraska

Primary care graduates: 64%

Tuition and fees: $31,042 (in-state students) and $70,654 (out-of-state students)

Enrollment: 510

University of Nebraska—Omaha campus

While the University of Nebraska Medical Center ranked 6 in primary care and 9 in rural medicine, it was just 64 among research schools. The school’s enrollment is largely male with just 40.4% of students female. Plus, UNMC is one of the most expensive school on this list for out-of-state students.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and general surgery.

6. (tie) University of North Texas Health Science Center

Forth Worth, Texas

Primary care graduates: 64.2%

Tuition and fees: $19,022 (in-state students) and $34,710 (out-of-state) students

Enrollment: 907

Center for BioHealth

While the medical school ranked 48 in primary care and its rank for research wasn’t published, it landed at number 11 for rural medicine. Texas, meanwhile, is projected to have one of the worst primary care physician shortages by 2030, according to research by the Robert Graham Center.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, diagnostic radiology, and general surgery.

6. (tie) Lincoln Memorial University (DeBusk)

Harrogate, Tennessee

Primary care graduates: 64.2%

Tuition and fees: $41,155

Enrollment: 769

Le Bonheur Children’s Medical Center, teaching affiliate of LMU

US News didn’t publish the DeBusk’s rankings for either research or primary care. Tuition and fees for full-time students make the college one of the least expensive private medical schools in the country.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopaedic surgery, pathology (anatomic and clinical), pediatrics, physician medicine and rehabilitation (pain management), diagnostic radiology, and general surgery.

5. Morehouse School of Medicine

Atlanta, Georgia

Primary care graduates: 66%

Tuition and fees: $43,373

Enrollment: 358

Midtown Atlanta. Mike/Flickr.

Ranked 26 overall for primary care schools, Morehouse’s rank for research was not published by US News. The Atlanta medical school is also overwhelming female with just 34% of enrolled students being male.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, family practice, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, ophthalmology, orthopaedic surgery, pediatrics, psychiatry, radiation oncology, and general surgery.

4. Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine

Erie, Pennsylvania

Primary care graduates: 67.5%

Tuition and fees: $31,720

Enrollment: 2,220

Main medical school building

While the school ranked 51 overall for best primary care program, US News did not publish ranks for any other specialties. Lake Erie is also the second least expensive private medical school, behind only Baylor College of Medicine. Of those who applied to residency programs, more than half (54%) of the class of 2013 were admitted to their first choice.

The most popular programs for the 2012 and 2013 classes were: emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, and pediatrics.

3. West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine

Lewisburg, West Virginia

Primary care graduates: 70%

Tuition and fees: $21,150 (in-state students) and $51,150 (out-of-state students)

Enrollment: 817

http://www.physiciansmoneydigest.com/_media/_upload_image/westvirginiaschool.jpgwestvirginiaschool.jpgwestvirginiaschool.jpgwestvirginiaschool.jpgwestvirginiaschool.jpg

Campus. www.wvsom.edu

Ranked 82 overall for primary care, West Virginia’s research rank was not published. According to US News, 59% of graduates who applied to residency programs were admitted to their first choice.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, general surgery, and pediatric internal medicine.

2. University of Pikeville

Pikeville, Kentucky

Primary care graduates: 70.1%

Tuition and fees: $38,950

Enrollment: 432

Dori Hjalmarson/Kentucky.com

Neither the research rank nor the primary care rank was published by US News. Still the school is also one of the least expensive private medical schools in the country, and half (50.7%) of graduates were admitted to their first-choice residency program.

The most popular programs were: emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, orthopaedic surgery, pediatrics, and psychiatry.

1. Michigan State University (College of Osteopathic Medicine)

East Lansing, Michigan

Primary care graduates: 79.8%

Tuition and fees: $40,182 (in-state students) and $82,141 (out-of-state students)

Enrollment: 1,252

MSU East Lansing campus

The top school for turning out primary care residents ranked 9 overall for primary care, but it’s going to cost big time whether you’re in-state or out-of-state. And according to US News, just 31% of graduates who applied to residency programs were admitted to their first choice.

The most popular residency and specialty programs were: anesthesiology, emergency medicine, family practice, internal medicine, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, physical medicine and rehabilitation, and general surgery.