Schools, medical groups endorse shorter education programs

Shortening the time it takes to get a medical degree would lessen newly-minted doctors' debt burden without compromising quality of care, according to the New York Times. An unpublished survey of 120 medical schools found 30 percent either plan or will consider instituting three-year programs, according to the article. Additionally, the American Medical Association is actively trying to encourage changes in the medical education model, awarding $11 million to medical schools last year to promote innovative approaches like competency-based programs, in which students progress based on performance rather than time spent in the program. More than 12 medical schools also shortened premedical studies, resulting in programs where students complete their bachelor's degrees and M.D.s in seven years. Article