[Rome] Along with many congested areas of administrative procedures worldwide, there has been another field of medicine allegedly found to be affected by COVID-19. When all International Medical Graduates (*regardless of their nationalities but depending on their countries issuing medical degrees) plant to find the opportunities of residency programs, or fellowships, within the US, these applicants must have an official certification from the organization called ECFMG (Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates,) which has established a set of rules to conduct assessment if a specific medical school is qualified to meet the minimum level of medical education to provide North American public with an appropriate level of clinical cares. Previously, in 2010, the ECFMG already announced its alteration in accreditation system that was supposed to be effective in the year of 2023, according to which several European medical universities are also affected and their graduates and medical students are accordingly either to be qualified or not.
However, due to this year’s pandemic COVID-19, the ECFMG has figured out this alteration process will take more time than was originally expected from different countries around the world and recently decided to postpone its complete application to 2024, at least, as of May 13, 2020 (*https://www.ecfmg.org/news/2020/05/13/ecfmg-medical-school-accreditation-requirement-moved-to-2024/). Therefore, the current medical students around the Europe can now have 1 additional year to decide to apply for their “individual” ECFMG certification, requiring USMLE Step 1 & 2, which will still enable some of the students, whose medical schools may be deleted from the currently accredited university list, to prolong their eligibility to take USMLE step 3 as well as to apply for their residency within the US.
Officially, there have been a lot of different speculations on the possibility of “newly accredited European medical universities” regarding this change of ECFMG Certification as well as WDOMS accreditation list. However, since the “Agency” should be at the level of national organization for an individual European country, one may expect to see there will be “late joining” agencies on the list of ECFMG even though the Agency application status is not 100% visible to public.