California is one of the most sought-after places to complete post-graduate training; the state has a variety of cases, excellent weather, and a diverse population. In the past, to be invited for a U.S. residency interview in California, an international medical graduate or foreign medical graduate had to be in possession of a “Post-Training” Authorization Letter or PTAL from the Medical Board of California. It was a notoriously tedious process to receive this PTAL letter from the Board because it had some very cut-and-dry requirements; for example, you could not have a gap of more than 60 days in clinical exposure and training.
There were several timing issues involved with receiving a PTAL to apply for residency and a slew of other factors that made obtaining a residency in California very difficult for IMGs and FMGs. Now that this prerequisite for residency in California is gone, more medical school graduates from around the globe will be able to apply to California programs. Over the years, Residents Medical had helped guide many of its candidates into California-based residency programs. Without the PTAL requirement, it may be less paperwork, but it will surely make California an even more competitive location to land a residency position.