Never Forget The Fundamentals of Life

Children have been having it very easy for the past three decades, in my opinion. They have been shielded by parents and elders from the real world. They dream to have big careers, they think the world will reward their efforts with jobs and comforts of life. They are made to feel that nothing can go wrong for them as long as they are studying for their degrees in college or university.

The problem arises after graduation when they start experiencing difficulties in finding and securing a job. The problem arises when what parents and elders have been telling you about their views about very high demand for degrees and diplomas conflicts with the hard economic realities in today’s world of many graduates and few jobs. The problem arises when your high expectations of your education carrying you far and high to get employed does not get you the desired results, if any.

I can tell you first hand that I was one of those young children, thinking that my efforts and determination to become a medical doctor would take me far. But world has changed in the past 20 years. Gone are the days when just a medical degree from any part of the world would be enough in Western societies for postgraduate training and specialization. Nowadays, apart from the origin country and awarding institution, your domicile (i.e passport) plays a big role in deciding your fate in today’s job market for doctors. Excellent USMLE scores will always be helpful in your attempt to secure a training/residency post in the USA. But the decisive factor on whether you may or may not be able to get your coveted residency position would be your previous clinical exposure and your nationality.

These are some of the harsh realities out there in this modern world for medical students about to graduate, and for the boys and girls who are thinking of a career in Medicine. These words of mine are applicable for the issues faced by International Medical Graduates (IMGs) from non Western countries in securing residency/training positions in the USA, UK, Australia, Canada etc.

So my dear young friends, try to understand the harsh realities that doctors face in the real world before you decide to enroll in medical school/college. Another harsh reality is the high financial, personal and social costs for studying in Medicine. I wonder whether the low salaries and financial returns of doctors nowadays, along with the great risks of malpractice/negligence litigation justifies the financial costs of a degree and career in Medicine. I leave it to my dear readers to make up their minds for themselves.

All comments are welcome. Let’s start this debate on the wisdom or otherwise of choosing a career in Medicine, and continuing medical practice if an individual has already graduated with a medical degree.