How long does medicine take? New and improved formula! (1 Viewer)

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Nov 27, 2002
I've replied in another thread but I just thought I would stick this for the benefit of other members. Medicine is a particularly demanding and challenging profession which is potentially a very rewarding career. I don't intend to discourage any of you, but before signing your letter of confirmation I think it's important that you have a realistic expectation of what kind of committment is required in the long run so as to prevent disappointment further down the track.

...There are only two undergraduate universities in Australia which offer a minimum of 5 years for their course, these being Monash and Newcastle (Bond pending). The longest of course if if you do through the GAMSAT way in which case, basic medical training is 3 years for the undergraduate degree plus 4 years in graduate medicine. Which is 7 years all up. Then there's internship and residency (which is basically like paid work experience with very bad rates) at a hospital for 2 years. Afterwards you're working as a registrar/consultant at a hospital and making sure the interns don't screw up on the job, while at the same time undertaking a part time graduate fellowship of your own desiring (4-6 years).
So all in all, the shortest path to becoming a practicing physician (if my maths is correct) would be 11 years. The longest would be if you enter medicine via a graduate course and decide to specialise in a high demand/challenging speciality like psych or opthalmology in which case it would take 15 years.

So to sum up, if you want to become a doctor be prepared to sacrifice 11-15 years of your life.

More information here: Pg. 13
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