US Medical Schools See First Expansion in 40 Years

Enough with American students forced offshore for training
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 15, 2010 7:31 AM CST
US Medical Schools See First Expansion in 40 Years
Doctors Susan Farrar (L) and Shannon Lamb (R) deliver a baby girl named Esther by C-section on board the USNS Comfort, a US Naval hospital ship, on January 21, 2010 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.   (Getty Images)

Nearly two dozen new medical schools have recently opened or are poised to open in the first surge in the number of doctors this country educates in at least 40 years, the New York Times reports. The expansion is aimed at redressing the odd situation that American students who can't get into medical school here are fleeing to overseas schools, while hospitals here are using foreign-born and -trained doctors to fill residencies.

The rash of new medical schools, which could produce as much as an 18% increase in graduates, also reflects confidence that aging baby boomers, as well as others who may gain health insurance through national health care reform, will boost the market for medical care. There are currently only 131 medical schools in the US, the Times notes, compared to 200 law schools. (Read more medical schools stories.)

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