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Internal Medicine Leaders Join Growing Call for COMLEX-USA Equivalency in Residency Applications

March 18, 2024

The Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine (AAIM) joins an ever-growing list of specialty groups who are advocating for the COMLEX-USA credential for DOs as part of a holistic residency application process.

AAIM includes the Administrators of Internal Medicine (AIM), the Association of Program Directors in Internal Medicine (APDIM), the Association of Professors of Medicine (APM), the Association of Specialty Professors (ASP), and the Clerkship Directors in Internal Medicine (CDIM).

The statement reads, in part:

“[The AAIM] encourages all Internal Medicine residency programs and Internal Medicine subspecialty fellowship programs, in their holistic review of applicants, to accept that the COMLEX-USA results are equivalent to the USMLE.”

Read the full statement here.

In the 2024 Match, DO applicants accounted for more than 17 percent of those who were selected for internal medicine (IM) residencies. The number of DOs choosing IM has grown; in 2019, 1140 residency positions were filled by DOs, and in 2024, that number was 1783, making it a top specialty for DO applicants for residency training.

“Osteopathic graduates have an affinity for internal medicine, and this statement of support from leaders in the training of internal medicine physicians and subspecialists demonstrates the value they place on osteopathic physicians in their programs,” said John R. Gimpel, DO, MEd, president and CEO of NBOME.

“This affirmation of the value of DO students – both in the credentials they bring in their application and also the deliberate consideration of their wellness—illustrates how the call for parity in the residency application process benefits both the individual and the program,” Gimpel added.  “Thanks to AAIM leadership and the entire IM community for standing up for equity, holistic review, fairness, and wellness across the continuum.”

The support of internal medicine leadership is a result of the myriad of advocacy and education efforts in which the NBOME engages—along with peer organizations such as the American Osteopathic Association and the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine—to increase awareness and acceptance of osteopathic applicants and their qualifications.

For more information, visit the NBOME Advocacy page.


About the NBOME:
The NBOME is an independent, non-governmental, nonprofit assessment organization committed to protecting the public by providing the means to assess competencies for osteopathic medicine and related health care professions. NBOME’s COMLEX-USA examination series is a requirement for graduation from colleges of osteopathic medicine and provides the pathway to licensure for osteopathic physicians in the United States and numerous international jurisdictions.

Renee Cree, MA
Director for Communications