Nine months into the global pandemic, medical school applications in 2020 are up 18% in the United States compared to the same period in 2019, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. Academics have dubbed it the "Fauci effect," attributing the phenomenon to the visibility of Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease. Dimple Patel, an associate dean of admissions at University of Minnesota's Medical School, said med school applications are up 40% at the Twin Cities campus and up 77% at the Duluth campus. Many of the application essays she reads inevitably mention topics of the pandemic, health equity and social justice. Similarly, at the University of California, Davis, medical school, applications surged 40%, with some 10,000 applicants for just 130 spots in the program. Nursing programs are also reporting increases as well.

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