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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The International Medical Graduate


International medical graduates (IMGs) are graduates of medical schools located outside the United States (U.S.) and Canada. IMGs face various challenges on the road to U.S. residency training. These challenges include sitting for the United States Medical Licensing Examinations (USMLEs) to obtain certification from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG). After that, IMGs are faced with a foreign application process whereby they must apply for and secure a position in a residency program through the Electronic Residency Application System (ERAS) and the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP). Once accepted into a residency program, IMGs who are not US citizens or legal permanent residents are challenged with securing a visa to be able to practice in the U.S. In this article, we elaborate on these processes and highlight the challenges IMGs may face along the way.

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