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The Most DO-Friendly Dermatology Programs in the US

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by Monique Cloete in Residency

Are you wondering how DO-friendly (or unfriendly) dermatology is as a US medical specialty? Do you want to know your chances of matching in this highly competitive field? Would you love to figure out what dermatology programs a DO would stand the best chance?

This article will give you the most up-to-date information on DO-friendly dermatology programs. Use this information to strategize on whether – and where – to apply to maximize your chances of matching as a DO in dermatology.


  • Dermatology is a competitive US medical specialty but there are DO-friendly residency programs.
  • One residency program filled all its available positions with DOs.
  • The match rate for DOs remains low.
  • See the full list of searchable residency programs to strategize where DOs have recently been the most welcome
  • Be sure to bookmark this page – and sign up for the newsletter – to keep up with the latest residency and USMLE trends and maximize your chances of matching

Table of Contents

What’s the Difference Between a DO and an MD?

Let’s start with some definitions.

DO: Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Licensed physicians trained in “whole body” wellness and treatment techniques in muscle and joint manipulation in addition to mainstream treatments.
Allopathy Vs. Osteopathy

In the US, there are two main branches of registered physician:

  • Allopathy: In this path, doctors train in modern, sometimes referred to as “Western”, medicine to treat symptoms and diseases. Doctors who train in this branch are licensed as Doctors of Medicine (MD)
  • Osteopathy: These doctors have the same education and licensing exams as MDs but have additional training in muscle and joint manipulation. Doctors who train in Osteopathy are licensed as Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) and have the same residency training and choices as MDs.

To begin practicing medicine, DOs and MDs must take specific licensing exams:

  • COMLEX-USA: This test assesses osteopathic medical knowledge in addition to allopathic medical knowledge in order to become licensed as a DO in the USA.
  • USMLE: This test assesses allopathic medical knowledge and is required to become licensed as an MD.
NRMP: “National Resident Matching Program®”
  • The organization that administers the “Match.” In the match, the NRMP pairs residency applicants with a residency program.

Note that prior to the 2020 Match, DOs had access to a “pool” of residencies reserved for which only they could match. The current system has merged DO and MD residencies so that every applicant has the same “chance” for matching in their chosen specialty.

For more on how to maximize your match chances and how the “Merge” has changed residency applications, see THE MATCH: Everything You Need to Maximize Your Residency Chances

Dermatology is Not DO-Friendly

Looking at the percentage of spots filled by DOs in the 2022 Match, we can see dermatology was not DO-friendly. Only three other specialty programs had a lower proportion of positions filled by DOs.

Similarly, the match rate for DOs in dermatology (50%) shows the DOs still have a moderate chance for acceptance in dermatology in the 2022 Match:

Here are the same data represented in a table:

% DO Applied that Matched% DO Unmatched% Positions Filled by DOTotal Positions OfferedTotal # All ApplicantsDO Senior MatchedDO Senior UnmatchedDO Senior Total
**Radiation Oncology0%100%0%185162
**Plastic Surgery0%100%0%194340
Vascular Surgery8%92%1%8414311213
Neurological Surgery43%57%4%24037991221
Orthopaedic Surgery56%44%13%8751,43511186197
Interventional Radiology59%41%12%169226201434
General Surgery62%38%12%1,6222,400200125325
Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation64%36%33%53272517699275
Obstetrics and Gynecology65%35%16%1,5032,044241130371
Diagnostic Radiology67%33%15%1,1551,56816984253
Internal Medicine/Pediatrics74%26%9%392458371350
Child Neurology89%11%9%18818217219
Internal Medicine94%6%15%9,80911,5981,503931596
Emergency Medicine95%5%25%2,9212,81373638774
Family Medicine96%4%27%4,9165,0551,345621407

For more on the most competitive DO medical specialties, see this article.

The Most DO-Friendly Dermatology Residency Programs

Even though dermatology is not a DO-friendly specialty, the same cannot be said for every dermatology residency program. For example, according to the most recent GME census, one dermatology residency filled all of its available positions with DOs (St Joseph). In addition, three other dermatology residency programs had a DO rate of 10% or higher: Western Reserve (33%), St Louis (17%) and Oklahoma (10%).

Here is a list of the most (and least) competitive dermatology programs for DOs. It includes data from the most recent National GME Census Survey. Percentages are of all residents in the program in 2020.

ACGME residency program codeDermatology residency nameCityState% residents US DO graduates% residents US MD graduatesOsteopathic Recognition# applications submitted (2021 NRMP Main Match)% applicants interviewed (2020 NRMP Main Match)# categorical positions offered (2021 NRMP Main Match)# categorical positions filled (2021 NRMP Main Match)# advanced positions offered (2021 NRMP Main Match)# advanced positions filled by (2021 NRMP Main Match)
802500143St Joseph Mercy Livingston ProgramAnn ArborMI1000No2930044
803821120Case Western Reserve University/University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center ProgramClevelandOH3367Yes51112.60066
802821116St Louis University School of Medicine ProgramSt LouisMO1783No5267.80044
803921074University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center ProgramOklahoma CityOK1090No4089.60033
802631048University of Minnesota ProgramMinneapolisMN892No5190044
800121010University of Alabama Medical Center ProgramBirminghamAL0100No4857.70065
800521017UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine/UCLA Medical Center ProgramLos AngelesCA0100No5156.50054
800521018University of California (San Diego) Medical Center ProgramLa JollaCA0100No4997.40055
800521019University of California (San Francisco) ProgramSan FranciscoCA0100No5098.70077
800521020Stanford Health Care-Sponsored Stanford University ProgramRedwood CityCA096No4937.80077
801121096University of South Florida Morsani ProgramTampaFL0100No4895.40044
801121115University of Florida ProgramGainesvilleFL0100No5358.60044
801221028Emory University School of Medicine ProgramAtlantaGA080No6053.60077
801611033University of Chicago ProgramChicagoIL090No57470033
801612030Cook County Health and Hospitals System ProgramChicagoIL092No5337.60033
801612135Loyola University Medical Center ProgramMaywoodIL0100No5275.40033
801721035Indiana University School of Medicine ProgramIndianapolisIN0100No5277.82233
801821036University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics ProgramIowa CityIA094No4749.50055
801911037University of Kansas School of Medicine ProgramKansas CityKS092No4598.80055
802121108Tulane University ProgramNew OrleansLA0100No5328.50044
802121109Louisiana State University ProgramNew OrleansLA0100No5085.50066
802321040Johns Hopkins University ProgramBaltimoreMD095No55212.50077
802421044Boston University Medical Center ProgramBostonMA093No45711.40055
802421114UMass Chan Medical School ProgramWorcesterMA082No51700055
802421141Tufts Medical Center ProgramBostonMA064No8984.30044
802431043Massachusetts General Hospital/Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Brigham and Women's Hosp ProgramBostonMA096No51080088
802512046Henry Ford Hospital ProgramDetroitMI0100No54514.80077
802513139Wayne State University School of Medicine ProgramDearbornMI082No50280044
802531045University of Michigan Health System ProgramAnn ArborMI096No56211.30088
802621049Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science (Rochester) ProgramRochesterMN088No54512.32266
802821050University of Missouri-Columbia ProgramColumbiaMO0100No4159.30033
802821051Washington University/B-JH/SLCH Consortium ProgramSt LouisMO0100No5547.90077
803221053Dartmouth-Hitchcock/Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital ProgramLebanonNH0100No4677.60033
803500126Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell ProgramLake SuccessNY092No46480066
803500127Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai ProgramNew YorkNY090No52400099
803521062New York Presbyterian Hospital (Cornell Campus) ProgramNew YorkNY092No5278.80044
803521064NYU Grossman School of Medicine ProgramNew YorkNY0100No5289.70099
803521065SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University ProgramBrooklynNY096No5198.50088
803521102University of Rochester ProgramRochesterNY0100No4755.30055
803531058Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine ProgramBronxNY089No54110.50066
803611066University of North Carolina Hospitals ProgramChapel HillNC0100No5516.20066
803621067Duke University Hospital ProgramDurhamNC0100No5887.60055
803621110Wake Forest University School of Medicine ProgramWinston-SalemNC0100No5749.50044
803811072Ohio State University Hospital ProgramGahannaOH0100No4805.22222
803812070Cleveland Clinic Foundation ProgramClevelandOH093No5397.94400
804021075Oregon Health & Science University ProgramPortlandOR0100No5787.90055
804821100University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston ProgramHoustonTX0100No5596.60077
804921112University of Utah Health ProgramSalt Lake CityUT0100No54171143
805431091University of Washington ProgramSeattleWA0100No5776.20055
805621093University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics ProgramMadisonWI0100No5107.50066
805621095Medical College of Wisconsin Affiliated Hospitals ProgramMilwaukeeWI0100No500100055
800512137Los Angeles County-Harbor-UCLA Medical Center ProgramTorranceCANo4566.10011
801131125Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science (Jacksonville) ProgramJacksonvilleFLNo4745.22200
801200030Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine ProgramRoswellGANo23819.60033
801211029Medical College of Georgia ProgramAugustaGANo46070033
801611032Rush University Medical Center ProgramChicagoILNo5426.20022
801621031McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University ProgramChicagoILNo5770055
801621034University of Illinois College of Medicine at Chicago ProgramChicagoILNo56990044
801621118Southern Illinois University ProgramSpringfieldILNo3959.23300
802021038University of Louisville School of Medicine ProgramLouisvilleKYNo4494.40022
802321041University of Maryland ProgramBaltimoreMDNo5204.80033
802500142Beaumont Health (Farmington Hills) ProgramCommerce TwpMIYes2188.42000
802500145Beaumont Health (Trenton) ProgramTrentonMINo2746.62200
802600050HealthPartners Institute ProgramSt. Louis ParkMNNo4069.30032
802700001University of Mississippi School of Medicine ProgramJacksonMSNo3907.60044
802800117Still OPTI ProgramKirksvilleMOYes43015.50022
803000001University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Medicine ProgramOmahaNENo03.10033
803300129Hackensack University Medical Center (Palisades) ProgramNorth BergenNJNo2927.60033
803321117Cooper Medical School of Rowan University/Cooper University Hospital ProgramCamdenNJNo3855.50022
803331128Rutgers Health/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School ProgramSomersetNJNo45800022
803400055University of New Mexico School of Medicine ProgramAlbuquerqueNMNo75513.20033
803500128St John's Episcopal Hospital-South Shore ProgramFar RockawayNYNo2997.2
803500129St Barnabas Hospital ProgramBronxNYYes32600011
803521063New York Medical College (Metropolitan) ProgramNew York CityNYNo4789.90022
803521104New York Presbyterian Hospital (Columbia Campus) ProgramNew YorkNYNo5267.70044
803521113Stony Brook Medicine/University Hospital ProgramStony BrookNYNo48712.80033
803600133Campbell University ProgramClintonNCNo2835.80022
803800144OhioHealth/Riverside Methodist Hospital ProgramColumbusOHNo2736.22200
803821068University of Cincinnati Medical Center/College of Medicine ProgramCincinnatiOHNo5218.30044
803821073Wright State University ProgramDaytonOHNo4216.40022
803831143The MetroHealth System/Case Western Reserve University ProgramClevelandOHNo5128.90033
804000076Samaritan Health Services - Corvallis ProgramSalemORNo2946.30022
804100104Temple University Hospital ProgramPhiladelphiaPANo54450033
804100105Lehigh Valley Health Network ProgramAllentownPANo3218.50022
804100107St Luke’s Hospital – Anderson Campus ProgramEastonPANo31315.20022
804821105Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at Lubbock ProgramLubbockTXNo39570033
804821121San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium ProgramJBSA-LacklandTXNo
804821133Texas A&M College of Medicine-Scott and White Medical Center (Temple) ProgramTempleTXNo4288.60033
804822088University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio Joe and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine ProgramSan AntonioTXNo4634.90033
805013129University of Vermont Medical Center ProgramBurlingtonVTNo4504.20022
805100131Carilion Clinic-Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine ProgramRoanokeVANo3837.70033
805111089University of Virginia Medical Center ProgramCharlottesvilleVANo5394.10044
805121090Virginia Commonwealth University Health System ProgramRichmondVANo5056.80022
805121130Eastern Virginia Medical School ProgramNorfolkVANo4617.10044
805511092West Virginia University ProgramMorgantownWVNo38525.20022
805622131Marshfield Clinic ProgramMarshfieldWINo3318.30022

Concluding Thoughts

Dermatology is a competitive specialty for DOs. Only 50% of all dermatology applicants are accepted. That said, there are still places for DOs as some residency programs have high DO rates.

Are you despairing at your chances of matching into dermatology as a DO? Then, check out Never Forget, where you can learn how to master – not memorize – for the impressive USMLE scores to match at your dream residency. And if you’re looking for a residency advisor, look at our residency advisory services.

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Want FREE Cardiology Flashcards?

Cardiology is key for impressive USMLE scores. Master cardiology from a Harvard-trained anesthesiologist who scored USMLE 270 with these 130+ high-yield flash cards. You’ll be begging for cardio questions - even if vitals make you queasy.