ACGME Releases 2018-2019 Statistics on Graduate Medical Education Programs and Resident Physicians

30 September 2019

Today the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) released its 2018-2019 Data Resource Book, the most comprehensive and reliable resource of its kind, including data on the size, scope, and distribution of graduate medical education (GME) in the US.

ACGME Programs
Following steady growth in ACGME-accredited programs over the last decade, the 2018-2019 academic year showed the largest annual increase of programs to 11,685, up 4.2 percent from the previous academic year.

A total of 556 programs were newly accredited by the ACGME during the 2018-2019 academic year, with 236 more residency (specialty) programs, and 320 more fellowship (subspecialty) programs. This is partly due to 159 programs achieving Initial Accreditation in the transition to a single GME accreditation system and to programs accredited in new ACGME subspecialties. 

Of the newly-accredited ACGME programs, 333 (59.9 percent) are in medical specialties and subspecialties, 111 (20.0 percent) are in hospital-based specialties and subspecialties, and 112 (20.1 percent) are in surgical specialties and subspecialties.

Residents and Fellows
Of the total 140,391 active residents and fellows, a record number of 32,603 residents entered the pipeline in the 2018-2019 academic year, 1,248 more pipeline entrants than the previous academic year. Pipeline positions determine the size of the future physician workforce. The majority of residents entering these programs are in internal medicine, family medicine, pediatrics, emergency medicine, psychiatry, obstetrics and gynecology, and general surgery programs.

“The Data Resource Book allows policymakers, designated institutional officials, program directors, and others to identify and clarify issues affecting the accreditation of graduate medical education programs and the institutions that sponsor them,” said ACGME President and CEO Thomas J. Nasca, MD, MACP. “Our hope is that the data in this book serve as a valuable resource in the GME community’s ongoing efforts to improve medical education and health care for all.”

The full 2018-2019 ACGME Data Resource Book can be found on the ACGME website. The data tables and figures provided in this year’s edition include these sections: Program Accreditation, Program Characteristics, Resident Characteristics, Graduating Residents and Residents Leaving Prior to Completion, Sponsoring Institutions, Participating Sites, Program Directors and Faculty, and Program Activities.