Surgery helped to make the 2018 Main Residency Match the largest ever as the specialty offered and filled 3% more residency slots than it did in 2017, according to the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP).

Surgery brought 1,319 PGY-1 positions to the Match Day table this year and filled 76.2% of them with U.S. graduates and 99.6% of them overall. For all specialties, U.S. graduates filled 58.7% of the record-high 30,232 available spots, and the overall fill rate was 96.1%, the NRMP reported.

The 2018 Match also set new highs for total positions offered (up 4.4% over last year), total positions and PGY-1 positions filled (up 4.7% and 4.9%, respectively), and total applicants (up 1.7%). “The results of the Match are closely watched because they can be predictors of future physician workforce supply. There also is significant interest in the competitiveness of specialties, as measured by the percentage of positions filled overall and the percentage filled by senior students in U.S. allopathic medical schools,” the NRMP said.