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May 6, 1992

Washington University Medical School: Where's Family Practice?

Author Affiliations

Medical College of Georgia Augusta

JAMA. 1992;267(17):2330. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03480170056027

To the Editor.  —I was interested to read the many accomplishments of Washington University School of Medicine.1 The school can indeed be proud of its six Nobel laureates and sixth ranking among institutions receiving National Institutes of Health grant awards. The school's dean, William Peck, MD, accredits these successes to the institution's "visionaries who made bold, imaginative choices."One of these choices has been to exclude the second largest medical discipline, family practice. Washington University School of Medicine is one of only 14 medical schools without even a plan to develop a department of family practice. Furthermore, it ranks 115th out of 126 US medical schools in terms of the percentage of its graduates who have entered family practice residency programs in the past decade.2The decision to exclude family practice is impossible to justify on either a medical education or a health care delivery basis. All medical