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Monday, January 7, 2008

Monday, January 7, 2008

Family Income in Medical School

The American Association of Medical Colleges has published a study on "Diversity of U.S. Medical Students by Family Income" which shows that the majority of med students come from the top fifth of the population by family income. In addition, this number is actually growing, in spite of much official concern. The report concludes this way:
A real concern is a possible increase in
the systemic skewing toward children
of upper-income families. From 2000,
when 50.8 percent of matriculants
came from the top quintile, to 2005,
when 55.2 percent came from that
quintile, there may be the beginning
of an undesirable trend. As reported
elsewhere,6 the debt incurred by
medical students continues to increase
with every passing year; 2007 graduates
reported a median educational
debt of $140,000. With debt
increasing much more rapidly than
physician incomes, a continued
increase in the fifth quintile
percentage would be a warning that
medical education is becoming
increasingly out of reach for applicants
of modest means.
This is not good. But medical schools are in fact doing better than very selective colleges, which is not good either.

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