This month, ACP IMpact focuses on physicians and medical students practicing and studying internal medicine in Mexico.
There are 97 medical schools in Mexico. Training programs in these schools last for 4-5 years. Graduates spend one year as undergraduate interns and another year in social service, usually working as general practitioners in rural areas. At the end of this training period, medical graduates take the ENARM (Examen Nacional de Residencias Médicas) to earn admission to postgraduate training. Only around 15% of medical graduates pass this examination and are admitted to a medical postgraduate residency, thus leaving a high proportion of doctors trained as general practitioners without a specialty. About one quarter of doctors who pass the ENARM choose Internal Medicine as a specialty.
There are approximately 11,000 internal medicine physicians in Mexico. The biggest challenge physicians in Mexico face is the growing patient population, many of whom are affected by a struggling economy. Doctors must care for a large number of patients while still remaining current on medical knowledge.