INTRODUCTION: The Uniformed Services University F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine just passed its 45th anniversary, opening in 1972. A goal of the medical school, like those nationally, is the production of high-quality physicians. The purpose of this study is to describe the practice characteristics of our USU graduates and to compare data with the national cohort of U.S. MD graduates.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: To accomplish this, we performed a retrospective analysis of U.S. graduates (1980-2009). We used the American Medical Association Physician Masterfile to describe our graduates' current practice profile and compare them with the national cohort. In order to ascertain if USU is meeting our goal to provide high-quality physicians, we also compare our findings with national allopathic school data to norm-reference our results.
RESULTS: Our findings indicate that USU graduates contribute to both primary care and specialty care and they practice in all 50 states. USU graduates continue to serve their nation after their obligation is complete, with 64% continuing to practice in federal hospitals and agencies. USU graduates also have a higher board certification rate (90%) than the national cohort (88%).
CONCLUSION: Following our 45th anniversary, we provide continuing evidence that USU is keeping its contract with society. We provide evidence that USU continues to meet its obligation to the nation's health care needs by producing high-quality physicians who serve the country in multiple ways after their military obligation is complete, thus extending the definition of staying power. Our study is not without limitations. First, we could not precisely define the cohort to exclude graduates who still had service obligations. Second, the AMA Physician Masterfile had some missing data fields, so nonresponse or misclassification bias is possible in our results. Study strengths include the long period of time and large number of graduates in each cohort.
Bibliographical noteThis work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.
- American Medical Association Physician Masterfile
- retrospective analysis
- Uniformed Services University