Child care unaffordable for 98% of US medical residents

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TORONTO — Among resident physicians in the United States, around 98% do not make enough money to afford child care, according to a study presented at the Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting.

Ryan Brewster, MD, a resident physician at Boston Children’s Hospital, and colleagues examined data from the AMA, Labor Department and the U.S. Census Bureau on 2nd-year residents at 935 accredited residency programs and determined that child care is less likely to be affordable in urban areas and in the Mid-Atlantic, New England and West Coast compared with other areas of the country.

While resident physician salaries fell by 0.23% between 2000 and 2022, child care costs rose by 44.7% in the same time, they found. Meanwhile, child care subsidies and one-site child care were offered by just 12% and 26% of programs, respectively.

“We know that more than one in four trainees will have a kid during their training years. However, it’s unclear what type of support — financially or otherwise — that teaching hospitals are able to provide for their residents,” Brewster told Healio.

He said the results of the study suggest a “need for advocacy at a federal level to improve the determination of [graduate medical education] reimbursements at the institutional level to ensure that residents are receiving the benefits and support they need to build families.”


Brewster R, et al. Childcare affordability and benefits amongst U.S. resident physicians. Presented at: Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting; May 2-6, 2024; Toronto.

Study: Childcare is unaffordable for U.S. medical residents. Published May 3, 2024. Accessed May 4, 2024.

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