For over 40 years, the Council on Medical Education and Hospitals has answered the claims of a shortage of interns with the statement that intern programs are primarily educational and should therefore not be established in hospital as a substitute for the services expected from the attending staff. Many modern hospitals approved for intern training, whether currently sponsoring fully satisfactory or relatively weak intern training programs, have been or soon will be engaged in building programs which will result in increased bed capacity. In almost every instance, in community hospitals and university-affiliated hospitals alike, one of the first actions of the staff is to request an increase in authorized intern complement to "cover the additional beds."
Since 27% of available internships for 1962-1963 were unfilled, it should be apparent to all concerned that the intern pool is not inexhaustible. An increase in the authorized complement for any individual hospital does