Would You Choose the Same Career for Your Kids?

Every parent wants the best for their kids. When thinking about whether we would want our children to follow in our footsteps and practice medicine, it is vital to consider and educate them on all the factors that define a career as a physician so they can make the best choice for them.

 

So, what are the most rewarding aspects of a career in medicine?
  • The financial stability: According to a 2018 Medscape report, physicians made an average of $329,000 per year. Despite the financial hurdles of an early medical career, most physicians are able to secure a stable financial future once they reach attending status.

Physicians make an average of $329,000 per year

  • Having a respected career: In our society, being a physician is a big deal. Between the lengthy educational path and the skills that must be mastered, many find physicians to have high social status. Part of the reason why physicians are so respected is because they dedicate their lives to keeping others alive.

Part of the reason why physicians are so respected is because they dedicate their lives to keeping others alive

  • Helping humanity: Every physician takes the Hippocratic Oath, a guideline we must live by every day that reminds us to do no harm and provide the best care possible. When people are on death’s door, physicians have the unique opportunity and ability to save lives.

Every physician takes the Hippocratic Oath

 
Now, what are the most difficult parts of our jobs as physicians?

 

  • The grueling path to become a physician: Medical school is an extremely rigorous and expensive endeavor. Once you finally become a resident, you are at the bottom of the chain all over again as you work extremely long hours and are heavily in debt. In addition, an attending’s salary is only achieved after residency, which is an additional three to ten years after medical school.
  • The pressure of medicine: Medicine can be emotionally draining. We must constantly give our best to our patients, and if we even momentarily falter, there could be disastrous consequences. Additionally, medicine is not the same today as it was twenty years ago. As healthcare becomes increasingly reliant on electronic medical records (EMRs), many physicians feel that charting is taking over the patient care experience. This pressure can also take a toll on your mental health and family life.
  • The long hours: Physicians have some of the busiest schedules out there. Many physicians work twelve to sixteen hour shifts and are often also on-call during the week. This means you will often have to miss out on celebrations and social gatherings that others would be able to attend.

An important point for every parent to remember is that ultimately, we can’t decide on a future for our kids. However, as physicians, we can do our best to give our kids as much information and as many options as we can so that they can choose what will make them happiest in life.

 

 

References:

Navin Ramchandani, MD
About the author

Dr. Navin Ramchandani is a Medical Doctor, Diagnostician and Owner of R&R Medical Centre in Barbados. He is also an Advanced Pediatric Life Support (APLS) International instructor with the Advanced Life Support Group (ALSG), and a Pediatric BASIC (Basic Assessment and Support in Intensive Care) international instructor. His passion is diagnosing and treating/helping people with complicated health issues to improve their overall health and quality of life.

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