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Why Isn't Wound Care a Medical Specialty?

The Association of American Medical Colleges lists more than 120 medical specialties and subspecialties - everything from pain management to obstetrics to molecular genetic pathology. But you know what you won’t find on that list anywhere?

Wound care.

Isn’t it mind-boggling that wound care - which amounts to an annual cost of more than $32 BILLION DOLLARS to Medicare in the United States - isn’t a recognized medical specialty?

What’s more, wound care isn’t being taught to medical students: of the 100 medical schools that adequately report details of their curriculum to the American Association of Medical Colleges, only 50 reported any course content in wound healing. Of these 50, the average time spent on the topic was 9.2 hours over the entire four-year curriculum. (source)

Other specialties - like vascular medicine, or hospice and palliative care - used to be in the same position that wound care is today. In the case of hospice care, stakeholders were able to rally together and succeed in achieving ABMS recognition, but it is a long and arduous process.

That’s why education is such a key part of our mission. Until wound care becomes recognized specialty, it’s essential that as many physicians, nurses, and facility staff as possible come to better understand the multidisciplinary and team-based science of caring for wounds.

And this isn’t just a problem in the US: England and German have similar statistics. It’s one reason we made sure that our Wound Care Certification exam was internationally accredited. And it’s why are committed to assembling a team of dedicated, skilled, innovative providers from across the globe who will help us push the boundaries of wound care forward.

So if you aren’t sure what specialty you’d like to pursue, or if you’re an international medical graduate who is having a hard time finding a US residency, consider joining SWC to pursue the specialty-that-isn’t-yet: wound care and wound healing.

You will have the chance to make a real difference in people’s lives, to work as a healer, an educator, and team-builder, and will help us bring the best, most innovative care to populations who need it most. 

Are you someone who likes being ahead of the curve? Us too.


Skilled Wound Care is a mobile surgical practice committed to transforming the chronic wound care model in nursing facilities. Wound care experts make weekly bedside visits to patients in long-term care facilities, avoiding transfers to hospitals or clinics. Our expert physicians give patients the most up-to-date and effective wound treatments, and educate facility staff on how to help patients continue to heal quickly and effectively between visits. This model of collaborative care allows SWC’s physicians to improve patients’ lives and health outcomes, to empower nursing staff, and to raise public awareness. Skilled Wound Care, along with its nurse and nursing home partners, is working every day to positively transform traditional nursing home wound care.

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