MedEdits | Medical School Admissions Consulting

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Match Violations and Withdrawing From The Program Where You Matched

by Jessica Freedman, MD

"I really don't want to match there."
"Gosh. I hope I don't match at that program. It is last on my list."

Every year, when applicants decide how to rank programs, I hear comments like those listed above. The advice I give applicants is only to rank programs they would be willing to attend. For every program you rank, ask yourself, "Would I rather match at the program or not match?" If your answer is the latter, then leave that program off your list.

That said, what happens if you are devastated by your match result? Can you withdraw from the program and what are the consequences? Every year I receive calls from prospective clients who want to consult with me about how to withdraw from the program where they matched. If you withdraw from a program where you match, this is considered a match violation. It is also a major headache for the program that must now fill your spot. This is taken seriously by the NRMP. I strongly discourage individuals from withdrawing after they have matched but, if you decide you must do this, you need to contact the program directly and you must also contact the NRMP.

Read section 7.0 of the NRMPs Match Participation Agreement and the NRMPs policies for reporting a violation.