The medical field is very broad and many people venture into it yearly. The number of people who apply for medical courses sometimes outnumbers the available positions. However, the field is still open to as many people as possible.
The real question is, why do people want to be in the field? If you ask most high school students the career they prefer, it is usually related to medicine. Most people choose the medical field just because of its prestige. Others go into it because of the pay, and some choose it because of pressure from their family and friends.
Whatever your reasons are, it is important to note that the medical field is very delicate. This is because it deals with human lives. There are many things to consider before choosing a career in any medical field. Ensure that your reasons are right before proceeding.
1. Years Of Education
Education is key. In fact, it is the first step of your medical career. You cannot operate in any medical field without education. But one of the prices for entering medicine is the time you will spend in school. Before choosing to pursue any medical field, you must consider the length of your stay in the academe.
Most medical courses take longer periods to complete. Medicine takes at least 10 to 14 years. That means it will take you over ten years to become a practicing doctor. Dentistry, on the other hand, will take about eight years. While nursing will take 3 to 5 years.
It doesn’t end there though. To advance in your career, you will need continuing education. And you are encouraged to take advancement courses, so the journey is never ending. If you want to choose medicine, you should consider that you may be in your thirties before practicing, and you will have to constantly adapt to new technologies.
However, there are medical fields that require less time. A field like a pharmacy technician only requires 1 to 2 years to complete. But, pharmacy technicians still need a Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) certification to advance in their careers.
They need to take PTCB practice tests and exams. With Medical Hero, pharmacy technicians can practice online courses for free. There are also free study guides to make the process easier. The point is that even the fields with shorter years need certification and advancement courses. So, make sure to choose wisely and weigh your options.
2. Cost Of Education
We all know that medical courses are mostly expensive. Before choosing a medical field, you should consider the financial implications. Can you sponsor yourself? Can your family support you? Are there any grants and scholarships available? Can you work while schooling?
Those are questions you should ask before launching out. Medical courses are evidently demanding, and you may not be able to combine academics with work. As such, you should have a solid financial plan. A poor financial plan can lead to incurred debt.
3. Motivation and Purpose
Before choosing a medical field, your motivation should be put in check. Joining the medical field without having enough passion will not carry you throughout your course. Motivation is what will get you through the challenges and stress.
Medical courses are highly demanding and tasking. It is important that you love the field enough to want to go into it. Choosing the medical field just because your parents say so is a terrible risk. Your motivation, purpose, and your chosen field should align. You don’t want to drop halfway because there was no zeal in the first place.
You should also note that the medical field requires a background in Science and Math. If Science and Math are not your strength, then reconsider your choice.
4. Devotion To Public Service
Everything about medicine and healthcare has to do with serving the public. Every aspect of the medical field is proposed to save lives. However, before you choose to pursue medicine, you should sit down and decide. If you are committed to serving others, then you can proceed.
If you do not enjoy being around others or helping those in need, then the medical field may not be for you. There should also be no personal biases when you are in medicine. The medical field comes with a lot of responsibilities and social interaction. Lack of devotion to serve will reflect poorly on your productivity.
5. Job Opportunities
Before choosing a medical career, consider the job opportunities in the field. Don’t just plan for the study duration, plan ahead. While some fields have enough work opportunities, others have limited offers. Getting jobs in some fields also needs extra certifications. You should put that into consideration before choosing a field.
6. Assessment Of Skills
Assess your strengths and know if they tally with the field. The medical field has some general skills. Also, every field has specific requirements. For instance, doctors have required critical skills.
The general well-being and survival of your patients solely depend on your skills. You also need communication skills and patience in dealing with patients or customers. For instance, if you are short-tempered, the nursing field might not fit you. Although there is room for improvement, it’s best to focus on your strength.
You would also have to be research-driven. The medical field is fast evolving, and you need to continue learning. Don’t choose the medical field if you can’t commit to self-improvement.
The medical field is very complex. There are both opportunities and challenges. Before choosing any field, keep in mind that there are things to consider. Be passionate about your chosen field, and don’t begin a medical career for fun. If there is zero interest, you will not last the storm.
You should also have your finances planned out because medical courses can be expensive. You can apply for grants and scholarships. If you are lucky to be able to fund yourself, the better.
In addition, the medical field needs devotion and service. Having the heart to serve is a strong motivation to join the field. Carefully assess your strengths, skills, and weaknesses. Never make an impulsive decision and be sure it is what you really want.