Facts and Figures
synapse: University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine
Graduate Medical Education
Graduate medical education (GME) encompasses the years of education beyond the four years of medical school. In order to become a medical doctor, medical school graduates must complete a minimum of three years of GME in the specialty area in which they intend to specialize—from primary care areas such as family, pediatrics or internal medicine, to specialties such as surgery, cardiology or neurology. GME can refer both to residency training, the three years beyond medical school, and fellowship training, post-residency sub-specialty training in highly specialized areas, such as pediatric oncology, that may require two or more years of further education.
Increasing residency positions is the key to keeping medical school graduates in our state and addressing Nevada’s physician shortage. If a doctor graduates from the School of Medicine, but leaves the state for residency training, that physician has only a 40 percent chance of returning to Nevada to practice medicine. Conversely, if a doctor graduates from the School of Medicine and stays in Nevada for residency training, the chances of staying in Nevada to practice more than double, jumping to 83 percent.
Efforts are underway to greatly expand the number of GMS positions available through a combination of community hospital partnerships, federal funding and private donations. See "Meeting rural Nevada's health care needs with a new residency" for more details on GME program growth statewide.