UCSF Fresno Celebrates Match Day, Fills All Available Residency Positions for 16th Year in a Row

FRESNO – Today on Match Day (March 18), UCSF Fresno learned the identities of the 73 physician residents and four oral and maxillofacial surgery residents who will start training at UCSF Fresno later this summer. The San Joaquin Valley has one of the lowest physician-to-patient ratios in the state and the region ranks near the bottom in California for health outcomes. Roughly 50% of physicians trained at UCSF Fresno remain in the Central Valley to care for patients, continue their education and teach future physicians.

“Our reputation as a regional campus of the consistently top-ranked UCSF School of Medicine continues to grow,” said Lori Weichenthal, MD, Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education at UCSF Fresno. “We filled all available residency training positions for the 16th year in a row. Our focus is on training highly skilled, culturally competent physicians who have the tools to be resilient in the increasingly complex field of healthcare.”

Match Day takes place every year in March and is the time when graduating medical students across the United States, including students in the San Joaquin Valley Program in Medical education (SJV PRIME), receive emails simultaneously that reveal where they will spend the next several years conducting the graduate medical education (residency) necessary to practice medicine in the U.S. It’s also the day when residency programs like UCSF Fresno learn the identities of the first-year residents or interns who will join their training programs.

Six SJV PRIME medical students pursued residency programs this year. The students include:

· Gagandeep Dhugga is from Livingston, California, and a graduate of UC Davis

· Kao Houa Vang is from Fresno, California, and a graduate of UC Berkeley

· Michael Montoya is from Visalia, California, and a graduate of UC Merced

· Harjot Singh-Virk is from Fresno, California, and a graduate of UC San Diego

· Tyler Wilson is from Fresno, California, and a graduate of Fresno State

· Ka Xiong is from Merced, California, and a graduate of UC Davis

All six of the SJV PRIME students will be staying in California for residency training and to provide much needed care. Four will be staying in the Central Valley with one staying on at UCSF Fresno. Tyler Wilson matched with the UCSF Fresno Emergency Medicine Residency Program.

“Congratulations to all our SJV PRIME students. It is especially rewarding when SJV PRIME students match with UCSF Fresno,” said Kenny Banh, MD, assistant dean for undergraduate

medical education. “It allows us to continue training students from the Valley to care for Valley community members.”

“Increasing and diversifying the physician workforce and training physicians who come from and understand the Valley communities they serve is imperative to improve health outcomes in the San Joaquin Valley,” said Loren I. Alving, director of the UCSF SJV PRIME. “Recruiting, training and retaining physicians for our region is what UCSF SJV PRIME seeks to do.”

Medical school graduates typically register with the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) as part of the Match Day process. The NRMP utilizes a mathematical algorithm to place applicants into residency and fellowship positions. Medical school graduates or interns will then begin residency training at the hospital or program where they “matched. A similar “match” occurs for fellows and sub-specialty training each year in December.

The UCSF Fresno residency programs that participated in the NRMP match received 7,889 applications and conducted 913 interviews for 73 positions, filling all available residency positions. UCSF Fresno fellowship programs that took part in the October/December NRMP match received 1,922 applications and conducted 203 interviews for 19 positions. Non-NRMP programs filled available positions through another matching service or through interviews and offers. The UCSF Fresno Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Residency Program received 214 applications and conducted 20 interviews for 4 available spots.

“Offering local students the opportunity to complete medical school and pursue residency training in the Valley is vital to keeping them in the region,” said Michael W. Peterson, MD, associate dean for Undergraduate Medical Education and Research at UCSF Fresno. “Undergraduate medical education (medical school) and graduate medical education (residency) are inextricably linked. It’s the continuum of a well-documented pathway that will help keep them in the region.”

UCSF Fresno currently offers residency training in eight medical specialties, one oral and maxillofacial surgery dental residency, fellowship training in 18 medical sub-specialties and three residency programs for physician assistants.

SJV PRIME BACKGROUND: The San Joaquin Valley Program in Medical Education (SJV PRIME) represents the sixth program in the University of California’s programs in medical education. The program prepares medical students to be excellent clinicians, patient advocates and physician leaders for under resourced communities, especially in the San Joaquin Valley. The training program is designed to prepare medical students to address the unique health needs of the region’s diverse populations. It was established in 2010 as a partnership among UC Merced, UCSF Fresno, the UCSF School of Medicine with the UC Davis School of Medicine serving as the degree-granting institution. The first class of students started in 2011.

In 2018, the UCSF School of Medicine became the degree-granting institution and paved the way for students enrolled in the program to spend the bulk of their training at UCSF Fresno and other clinical locations in the Valley, including research and community engagement in partnership with UC Merced. The first cohort of students in the new UCSF SJV PRIME started in 2019.

Currently, there are 39 students enrolled in SJV PRIME, with the majority coming from backgrounds underrepresented in medicine. With strong Valley connections, SJV PRIME

students call the region home. Including this year’s class, SJV PRIME will have graduated 53 students. Thirty-eight of the graduates will be starting or are completing residency or fellowship training. Ten graduates are now practicing physicians in the San Joaquin Valley, California or in the U.S. military.