Prior to discussing, interviewing for, or offering a position to an applicant, program directors must determine an applicant's eligibility by verifying the applicant's appointment status in the Applicant Match History that is available in the R3® system and/or by calling the NRMP to obtain that information. The Applicant Match History lists the appointment status of an applicant and indicates whether that applicant has requested a waiver of the binding commitment and/or been involved in an NRMP violation investigation. Failure to use the Applicant Match History could subject the program to a violation investigation by the NRMP. If the applicant is not ineligible, you can discuss the position and schedule an interview.
If you are investigated for a SOAP® violation, it means you may have violated a SOAP policy, and the NRMP is authorized to levy sanctions if a violation of SOAP policy is confirmed. Those sanctions could include being barred from participating in SOAP during the next year’s Match.
No. Until SOAP® concludes, SOAP policy requires SOAP-participating programs to offer unfilled positions only through SOAP and only to SOAP-eligible applicants. Unfilled positions in non-SOAP-participating programs cannot be offered at all until SOAP concludes.
The All In Policy applies to the Main Residency Match® and some specialties participating in the Specialties Matching Service®. The All In Policy requires any program in these participating Matches to register and attempt to fill all of its positions through the Match or another national matching plan. A “program” is defined by its ACGME® number. The Policy does not require programs to include all positions for which they are accredited, just those they wish to fill for a given training year. Learn more about the All In Policy
Limiting questions about other programs protects and respects an applicant’s right to privacy and minimizes undue or unwarranted pressure. In addition, programs are encouraged to submit rank order lists that are based on applicants’ credentials and goodness of fit for the program rather than the likelihood of the applicant ranking the program. Programs still can ask applicants about any information in their applications, including why the applicant prefers a specific program or specialty. And applicants may volunteer information about other programs if they choose to do so. Where else an applicant is applying is not considered a primary determinant of the applicant’s fit in a program.
Restricting a program’s ability to ask applicants about the names, specialties, geographical locations, or other identifying information about programs to which applicants have or may apply is not intended to limit mentoring relationships. Residency and fellowship program directors are encouraged to help applicants and residents who seek guidance about their training plans.
No. The restriction on questions about applicants’ interviewing behaviors includes geographic region; however, programs can ask applicants why they are interested in the city or state where that program is located.
As stated in the Match Participation Agreement, applicants and programs are not authorized to release each other from a binding commitment. Once a party has matched, or a position has been offered and accepted during SOAP®, a waiver of the binding commitment may be obtained only from the NRMP. Moreover, the Agreement also prohibits any program at a Match-participating institution from offering a concurrent year position to an applicant who has not received a waiver from the NRMP. The decision to grant or deny the waiver is at the sole discretion of the NRMP and is not subject to arbitration.
Institutional officials must ensure that none of their programs, regardless of Match participation status, discusses, interviews for, or offers a position to an applicant who has matched to or accepted a concurrent year position in another program or who is ineligible because of a denied waiver or a confirmed violation. Failure to ensure compliance could subject the institution to a violation investigation.
The Registration, Ranking, and Results® (R3®) system includes an Applicant Match History that details whether an applicant has requested a waiver of the binding commitment and/or been involved in an NRMP violation investigation. Programs are expected to use the Applicant Match History to determine applicant eligibility for appointment prior to offering an interview.
The NRMP solicits information from the applicant, program, and/or any other individuals with knowledge of the situation. A Preliminary Report documenting the nature of the allegation is prepared. If the results of the investigation indicate that a violation has not occurred, the case is closed. If the results of the investigation indicate a violation has occurred, the Preliminary Report is distributed to the subject of the investigation and any other parties who provided information material to the investigation for their review and comment. The case is then reviewed by a panel of the NRMP's Violations Review Committee, which determines whether a violation occurred and, if so, the appropriate penalty. A Review Panel Report is issued to the subject of the investigation, who will have ten business days to notify the NRMP of the intent to dispute the finding by initiating arbitration.
All Match participants should review carefully The Policies and Procedures for the Reporting, Investigation, and Disposition of Violations of NRMP Agreements.