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Recommendations to Support DO Students’ Applications to Residency


The academic family medicine organizations – Association of Departments of Family Medicine, Association of Family Medicine Residency Directors, NAPCRG, and Society of Teachers of Family Medicine – value all trainees on their respective pathways to licensure, residency program application, and board certification, and supports efforts to reduce bias and undue burden for applicants to residency. 


To promote parity in the application process, the organizations recommend the following:

  1. Family medicine program directors should avoid overreliance on a single examination program when selecting candidates for residency, focusing instead on a holistic review of applicants, regardless of whether they are on the allopathic or osteopathic licensing pathway.  
  2. Osteopathic applicants to family medicine residency programs should not be required – nor made to feel like they are required – to undergo licensing examinations other than the osteopathic (COMLEX-USA) licensure exam.  
  3. Residency programs and their sponsoring institutions should implement processes that fairly consider osteopathic applicants within the context of the osteopathic (COMLEX-USA) licensure process.   

Resources for Residency Programs: