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Acad Med. 2017 May 30. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000001732. [Epub ahead of print]

Values Guide Us in Times of Uncertainty: DACA and Graduate Medical Education.

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N.I. Poll-Hunter is senior director, Human Capital Portfolio, Diversity Policy and Programs, Association of American Medical Colleges, Washington, DC. G.H. Young is senior director, Student Affairs and Programs, Academic Affairs, Association of American Medical Colleges, Washington, DC. M. Shick is director, Government Relations and Regulatory Counsel, Public Policy and Government Relations, Association of American Medical Colleges, Washington, DC.


With a new administration and Congress, there is uncertainty surrounding the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. In light of this uncertainty, medical schools have tried to better understand how they can support trainees with DACA. In their article in this issue, Nakae and colleagues describe the issues often encountered by medical students with DACA as they prepare for residency and by the program directors who receive their applications. They offer recommendations for best practices to support these trainees. The authors of this Commentary expand on these important considerations, based on their experiences at a national level. They argue that the core values in academic medicine should drive decision making, the student voice is critical, teamwork is essential, and wellness deserves attention. Academic medicine is part of a larger movement with partners across the health professions and higher education focused on advancing the values of access and opportunity for all. The authors of this Commentary argue that remaining steadfast and committed to the core values in medicine will allow the academic medicine community to successfully navigate these uncertain times.

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