Selecting Programs During the Post-Match SOAP

Selecting Programs During the Post-Match SOAP

At 11 a.m. (EST) on Monday, March 13th, residency candidates who participated in the Main Residency Match® through NRMP® will fall into one of three categories:

  1. Fully Matched – You have received a position that will give you full training for licensure (usually a Categorical position or Preliminary/Advanced combination)
  2. Partially Matched – You have received a position that will only partially complete your training for licensure (usually a Preliminary or Advanced position)
  3. Unmatched – You have not received any residency positions

If you are Fully Matched, congratulations! Your medical residency application season is over until 1 p.m. Friday, March 17th when you will learn where you have been placed. This is a good time to celebrate.

If you are Partially Matched or Unmatched and SOAP® eligible, you will be entering the Post-Match SOAP. Also at 11 a.m., those who are eligible will gain access to the List of Unfilled Programs from the NRMP® R3® system. Candidates will have 3 hours to pick and research programs– but selecting programs can prove to be very tricky. Not only do you want to ensure you qualify for the programs, but you will have to navigate through how to prioritize the 45 programs you are allowed.

To provide a little guidance, you can focus on programs in the order listed below:  

  1. Programs you have interviewed with in the past – It helps to have established prior history with a program, the better they know you, the better your chances of obtaining an offer during SOAP.
  2. Programs you have connections with – If you have any friends or family in a residency program, now is the time to politely ask if they might recommend you to the program if that program has a vacancy. Other types of programs you can consider are programs you have past history with such as programs you completed rotations or volunteer work in.   
  3. Fresh programs – These are programs you have not applied to this application season.
  4. Programs you have applied to in the past – These are programs you have applied to this season but did not receive any word from the program.

You should avoid:

  1. Programs you were rejected by during the Main Residency Match Season
  2. Programs you do not qualify for based on your professional background and the program’s requirements

It is incredibly important that you only apply to residency programs with requirements you fulfill. Some requirements to consider are USMLE exam scores, IMG vs US medical graduate, Visas, Time Since Graduation, etc.

You only get 45 maximum application opportunities to use during the Post-Match SOAP, and the most important part of the battle is selecting the most compatible programs. If you require any research assistance during the Post-Match, contact Electronic Residency by emailing support@electronicresidency.com or calling 858-299-2003 opt. 1.   

 

Changes to the Post-Match SOAP

Changes to the Post-Match SOAP 2017

While the Post-Match SOAP® has been established since 2012, each year NRMP® and ERAS® make changes to the policies and procedures to ensure the SOAP continues running more smoothly with optimal results for residency candidates and residency programs.

This year was no exception.

The 2017 Post-Match SOAP will see a big change.

There will only be three Offer Rounds.

By far the biggest change residency applicants will encounter this year is the reduction from five total Offer Rounds to three.

Traditionally, NRMP has held six Offer Rounds. This number was reduced to five for the 2014 Post-Match SOAP. However, with a majority of positions being offered during the first two Offer Rounds, NRMP decided to eliminate the final two Offer Rounds.

How does this affect SOAP timing and residency candidates?

While the change is big, the impact is fairly minimal. The Post-Match SOAP will now conclude earlier at 11 a.m. (EST) Thursday, March 16, 2017. The final update for the List of Unfilled Programs will follow at 12 p.m. (EST).

In case any candidates are worried that less Offer Rounds means less offers, as long as there are positions to be filled, programs can easily adapt to less offer rounds. Therefore, there shouldn’t be any difference in the amount of offers.