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IMG Residency Match Forum International Medical Graduates (IMGs) discussing the residency matching process.


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Old 07-10-2015
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Warning! LoR - Specialty Focused or not?

Hello All,
I intend to apply to EM and IM this year. I'm wondering do I need to get 3 LoRs for each of them or I can use generic LoRs for both?

I'm assuming that the generic LoR writer will not mention specialty.
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Old 07-10-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drdeji View Post
Hello All,
I intend to apply to EM and IM this year. I'm wondering do I need to get 3 LoRs for each of them or I can use generic LoRs for both?

I'm assuming that the generic LoR writer will not mention specialty.
You absolutely need an SLOR for EM (google it). Any specialty would prefer a specific one, but if there's one specialty where a generic letter may just work, it's IM
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Old 07-13-2015
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Hello,

In short, the answer is yes. The strongest applications have specialty specific LoRs for each specialty they are applying for. Generic LoRs are noticeable and send a less than positive message to program directors.

If possible, set up a meeting with your LoR authors, ask for their feedback and let them know your expectations for the letter.

-Olivia Mishler
Match A Resident Support
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Old 07-14-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bully Ball View Post
You absolutely need an SLOR for EM (google it). Any specialty would prefer a specific one, but if there's one specialty where a generic letter may just work, it's IM


I am doing my ER next mo... but all my other LORs (3) are generic...even when i told when what I wanted to go into... they didn't put it in the letter.

So is that a bad thing?

Also my ER elective hospital doesnt have a ER programs... I can't find a hospital that will take IMG.. I am feeling pretty helpless... and hopeless...

Any advice?!
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Old 07-15-2015
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nepdr View Post
I am doing my ER next mo... but all my other LORs (3) are generic...even when i told when what I wanted to go into... they didn't put it in the letter.

So is that a bad thing?

Also my ER elective hospital doesnt have a ER programs... I can't find a hospital that will take IMG.. I am feeling pretty helpless... and hopeless...

Any advice?!
If you have three letters, don't need a visa and have good scores, I wouldn't delay applying for a year just because of three mediocre letters. If you need/want a stronger, specific letter, see if you can join a volunteer clinic or get to know and work with a local doctor well enough for them to write you one. In my research and opinion, PD's vary on the importance they place on LOR's so it may not matter that they are generic for some programs.

If you want a good shot at EM, I would work hard on getting to know two ER docs well enough for both of them to give you an SLOR...remember you need 3 LORs in total, but it doesn't matter if you get 2 from different doctors on the same rotation..I'm assuming this is the best route for you since you have difficulty finding hospitals so you need to make the most out of this opportunity.

Not having an ER residency program isn't ideal, but getting at least one SLOR from an ER physician is much more important in my opinion.
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