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From the Council of Academic Family Medicine (CAFM)
Impact The Center for the History of Family Medicine Invites Medical Students and Residents to Enter Inaugural Essay Contest

September 7, 2021
The Center for the History of Family Medicine (CHFM) at the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Foundation is sponsoring its first essay contest for medical students and residents. Possibilities are wide open – the scholarly essays must simply cover a topic relevant to family medicine history in the United States. That could be anything from a day-in-the-life of a family doctor to a medical-political controversy within family medicine.

The contest goal is two-fold: to encourage the next generation of family physicians to engage with the specialty’s history and then use the lessons learned to improve future health care.

“The pandemic has shown us why this is important,” says Rick Kellerman, MD, CHFM Board of Curators. “Our history has been very valuable in dealing with COVID-19. We can look back and see what worked and what didn’t work in past pandemics, and learn from these successes and failures.”

In addition to gaining knowledge as they research and write the essays, medical students and residents have additional incentives for participating: The author of the winning essay will receive $1,000 and the essay will be featured in a video at the AAFP Foundation’s 2022 National Conference. The second-place winner will receive a $500 award.

To be eligible, medical students and residents must be a member of the AAFP. Residents must also be enrolled in an Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited family medicine residency training program. Essays may be submitted online through Nov. 1, 2021.

Visit the AAFP Foundation website for more information:

From the Coalition for Physician Accountability
Recommendations on 2021-22 Residency Season Interviewing

August 24, 2021

For Immediate Release: August 24, 2021
Contact: Joe Knickrehm, FSMB

Coalition for Physician Accountability Releases Recommendations on 2021-22 Residency Season Interviewing

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 24, 2021) The Coalition for Physician Accountability has released recommendations on 2021-22 Residency Season Interviewing for Medical Education Institutions Considering Applicants from LCME-Accredited, U.S. Osteopathic, and Non-U.S. Medical Schools. The recommendations were submitted by the Coalition’s Work Group on Medical Students in the Class of 2022 Moving Across Institutions for Interviews for Postgraduate Training (WG).

In developing the recommendations, the work group considered the current environment, future forecasts, and the perspectives of those closest to the issues the work group sought to address. The recommendations reflect the work group’s collective sense of how to proceed, and the work group urges each medical school, sponsoring institution, specialty society, and residency program to carefully consider them and commit to working together to create an equitable, transparent, and successful residency selection cycle that prioritizes the safety of all.

The full guidance document and recommendations are available on the Coalition for Physician Accountability’s website here.

Recommendation 1 ― Conduct Virtual Interviews for the 2021-22 Recruitment Cycle

Interest exists to extend a consistent approach to in-person interviews for the 2021-2022 residency cycle; however, recognizing the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic and the near certainty, given insufficient national vaccination rates, that the pandemic will continue into the winter albeit in unpredictable ways, the WG offers the following recommendation that we hope will minimize public health risks, mitigate inequity stemming from geographic variations in pandemic impact, and provide applicants, their advisors, and programs with guidance to promote consistency and decrease anxiety. 

Recommendation: All interviews should be conducted virtually for the 2021-22 recruitment cycle due to growing concerns about the delta variant and potential risks and disruptions from potential future variants. 

  • Programs should work to create a continuous, evidenced-based, standardized process to prioritize safety of applicants and others involved in the recruitment process; to mitigate bias wherever it exists; and to establish a consistent, fair, and equitable approach to reviewing and interviewing all applicants.
  • Programs should communicate their plans to medical schools and applicants as soon as possible.
  • Programs should extend effort to address the concerns about transparency raised during the 2020-21 cycle with a plan to disclose information about culture; community, patient population, physician, and other health care provider diversity; and concerns regarding variations in training and educational models.
  • Medical schools should provide guidance and advice as to best practices for virtual interviewing, and if available offer technical support and space for students who need to complete virtual interviews on-campus.

Recommendation 2 – Increase Our Understanding of Virtual Interviewing

Recommendation: Efforts should be made to assess the value of virtual interviews as well as the concerns associated with them that were evident during the 2020-2021 interview cycle.

A research agenda supporting discovery and mitigation of biases introduced by virtual interviewing should begin this year:

  • A rigorous research agenda will require well-defined metrics and available mechanisms to collect and share data; therefore, specialties, institutions, and programs are encouraged to collaborate to support improvements in the interviewing process and to share findings with the community.
  • Organizations should collect and share data on actual placement impacts during the 2022 interview cycle and changes from previous cycles.
  • Research questions that cover a range of topics that examine the impact of in-person and virtual interviews on recruitment and selection, identify inequities, and share best practices are encouraged.
    Some examples may include: 
  • Studying the conditions in the virtual interview environment that affect selection bias by both programs and applicants.
  • Describing applicant characteristics that are subject to bias during virtual interviews and in ranking behavior. Identify best practices for mitigating these biases. Compare and contrast how these same applicant characteristics, biases, and mitigation strategies correlate with in-person interviews.
  • Outlining best practices for identifying and mitigating biases during virtual interviewing for applicants and programs.
  • Determining the impact of time and cost savings on the number of virtual interviews candidates complete. What is the impact on Match rates?
  • Exploring alignment of applicant and program values before and after virtual interviewing.
  • Exploring the impact of cognitive load on interviewers’ scores that result from completing more interviews and establishing best practices for mitigation.
  • Standardizing the Virtual Interview Day: Best Practices.
  • Studying the impact of virtual interviewing on training sites that are historically difficult to fill (i.e., rural, newly accredited, FQHC, etc.).
  • Identifying characteristics (i.e., small vs. large specialty, rural vs. urban) of programs conducting virtual interviews that experienced an increase in the expected number of applicants. Similarly, identify characteristics of programs that experienced fewer applicants than expected.
  • Determining whether virtual (compared to in-person) interviews impact Match rates.
  • Exploring whether applicant training/career choice and satisfaction have changed since the introduction of virtual interviews:
    • Have applicants selected geographic sites they may not have pre-pandemic?
    • Have applicants changed or broadened their specialty options? Impact on satisfaction?


From the Council of Academic Family Medicine (CAFM)
Impact of Virtual Interviews - Survey of Past and Planned Research

August 9, 2021
The Council of Academic Family Medicine (CAFM) has discussed the need for research that thoroughly evaluates the impact of virtual interviews on the family medicine residency selection process.

CAFM is interested in understanding more about what research has been completed on this topic as well as any planned research. CAFM may wish to engage with researchers. If you are involved with or aware of research on the impact of virtual residency interviews, please complete this brief survey by Thursday, August 26, 2021:

From the AAFP Robert Graham Center and the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) 
Primary Care in the United States: A Chartbook of Facts and Statistics

August 5, 2021
Despite renewed interest in strengthening primary care in the United States in recent years, there remains an inadequate understanding of what primary care is and does insufficient investment in its infrastructure and growth, inadequacy in its workforce numbers and distribution, and inefficient coordination with other sectors.

To fill some of the gaps in knowledge by offering a snapshot of the facts and figures that make up contemporary U.S. Primary Care, the American Academy of Family Physicians Robert Graham Center, the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM), and IBM Watson Health recently published chartbook, Primary Care in the United States: A Chartbook of Facts & Statistics.

The Chartbook provides some utility to those seeking to better understand primary care and to those working to ensure its viability as we continue through the pandemic-engendered “new normal.”

Click here to access the Chartbook: