The growth of colleges of osteopathic medicine (COMs) during the past 20 years has been a catalyst for change and has created new challenges in osteopathic medicine. None of these challenges is more daunting than the task of sustaining an osteopathic graduate medical education (OGME) system that has suffered during this period of rapid development. Notable trends within the osteopathic medicine community since 1990 include allopathic residency programs obtaining OGME accreditation, COM graduates bypassing OGME, repeated major changes in American Osteopathic Association (AOA) accreditation policies, a growing dependence on Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education programs to train osteopathic graduates, and a lessening of options for the AOA to effectively direct its OGME system. The predicament is whether COMs can continue to grow without resulting in the demise of the OGME system and a loss of professional identity.
Dr. Cummings is associate dean, Statewide Campus System, Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, East Lansing, Michigan.
Correspondence should be addressed to Dr. Cummings, Associate Dean, Statewide Campus System, Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, A336 E. Fee Hall, E. Lansing, MI 48824; telephone: (517) 432-2853; e-mail: (email@example.com).