Job shadow with doctors and other medical professionals. Admissions committees don't expect applicants to have real experience actually treating patients. After all, you're not a doctor yet. But they do want to know that you've spent time getting to know what your future job would be like. Job shadowing is a great way to get some medical experience but there are other non-shadowing opportunities that may be available to you.
"Med school admissions committees want students to have realistic expectations for what a career in medicine will be like. says Dr. Sarah Carlson, a vascular surgery resident at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, who has also served on a medical school admissions committee. As an undergraduate, she volunteered to file x-rays at the local hospital, then parlayed that into an opportunity to talk with the radiologist. He explained both how to read x-ray films, and why he chose his profession. "It's those types of interactions that are important to have under your belt," she says. "Quite frankly, medicine isn't for everyone, so it's best if you do some soul-searching and spend some time with the people who have the job you want. Most doctors are happy to sit down with students who are considering a career in medicine."
Other ways to get medical experience include becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA), a volunteer emergency medical technician (EMT), or as a hospital scribe doing data entry. Some applicants are able to gain clinical experience by helping to care for family members.
Demonstrate your hands-on science knowledge. "Undergraduate research experience really shines through on medical school applications. Most medical schools want students who are interested in research, and the best way to show that interest is to come in having already gotten your feet wet" says Dr. Carlson. She did pipetting and ran assays for Dr. Pushpa Murthy's lab at Michigan Technological University. It was a small part of the research, but she conveyed the overall impact. "I had to explain at my interviews that the larger scope of the research was about inositol phosphate metabolism."
Medical student Carly Joseph did long-term research in engineered biomaterials. "Sticking with it gave me time to learn how to think critically and ignited my passion for science," she says. "I started off simply learning about biomaterials from older students in the lab, then gradually worked up to doing my own experiments and eventually presenting at conferences." By choosing to make research a main priority each semester she was able to form close relationships with faculty mentors and accomplish more during undergrad than she ever imagined.
In addition to college-based research programs, you can investigate summer offerings, including those through the National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates program or check out the AAMC database for summer undergrad research programs
Dr. Carlson volunteered with the Big Brothers-Big Sisters organization. So did Joseph. Rake leaves, build an accessibility ramp, clean the beach, walk a dog. There are lots of non-clinical options for volunteering that demonstrate your willingness to pay it forward and give back.
"They have many different programs and services." Joseph, accepted into Central Michigan University's College of Medicine, was part of the Forever Friends program, matched with an elderly woman she visited a few times each month. "I 've formed a great friendship with her, and hopefully, helped alleviate some loneliness. It 's a win-win!"
"Doctors are generally pretty altruistic people, and med schools want to see that you care about your community or have some drive to contribute to the greater good," says Dr. Carlson. "Community service comes in many forms, and really anything qualifies, from trash cleanup and mentorship programs to working the concession stand at a fund-raiser for a charity—anything that requires some unpaid time for a good cause."
Ask your pre-health professions advisor about volunteering opportunities on campus or in your community, which could include helping at local food banks or blood drives, local shelters for the homeless or those dealing with domestic violence. You could tutor, deliver good companionship and Meals on Wheels, or walk the dogs at a local animal shelter. Take an alternative spring break and work with Habitat for Humanity or on developing clean water sources for Third World countries. Check with your school for a list of community and global partners it works with who can use your time and talents. The mentors you develop will come in handy when it's time to gather recommendation letters—most schools ask for at least three—and the friendships you develop will last a lifetime.
Grades aren't everything, but they're extremely important. Choose a field of study that will yield a competitive GPA (grade point average). The recommended GPA for medical school applicants is 3.7 for MDs (medical doctors), 3.5 for DOs (doctors of osteopathy), and 3.4 for NDs (Doctor of Naturopathic). While many students who are planning careers in medicine decide to major in biology, Dr. Carlson earned her bachelor's in chemistry. Many of her colleagues majored in even more unexpected fields, including engineering, English, music, and classics.
"It 's OK if you 're not on the pre-med track right away when you start college; pursue experiences that genuinely interest you and rely on guidance from your faculty mentors to navigate your path"
There is no such thing as a pre-med major, says pre-health professions advisor Nicole Seigneurie, who works with students preparing for medical careers at Michigan Technological University. "There are so many different programs students can apply to." You will still need to do well in both your cumulative and your science GPA, classes like biology, physics, chemistry, and math, that are required for medical school admission. If you are struggling in any classes, get help right away.
During her fourth year, Joseph had to take many of the medical school prerequisite classes that were not part of her engineering curriculum and build a Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) study plan into her schedule.
Improve your odds by not placing all your hopes on one school. Do individual research on each school, says Seigneurie; application requirements can vary from school to school and from year-to-year.
She also notes that you can reach out to admission committees with specific questions about the program and expectations. And, she says, don't be bummed if at first you don't succeed. Try again. "If you don 't get accepted into the school of your dreams, it 's OK! Schools have many applicants and can 't take everyone," says McKenzie, who was accepted into the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. "My dad, who has been a family physician for 29 years, often tells me, "An MD is an MD, it doesn't matter where you go to school."
"Don't take it personally when you get some rejections—they happen at every stage of the game. If you cast a wide net, you'll increase your likelihood of getting an acceptance."
Other ways to get noticed among the hundreds or even thousands of medical school applications submitted each year: send supplemental materials beyond your application. For example, "if you've published a paper, consider sending a copy of the publication with a handwritten note to the director of admissions, indicating you really hope to be considered for acceptance," she says.
MCAT scores range from 472-528. Accepted medical students average around 508. Recommended study time: 300-350 hours.
Take a course and buy books and study on your own. Find the method that works for you. Take practice questions many times and don't let your practice scores spook you, says McKenzie. "I used the Kaplan book series, and studied by reading, highlighting, and taking notes. The real MCAT was not as hard as the Kaplan test, in my opinion." The pre-health professions advisor can help you find the resources you need.
You can also join a pre-health professions club or association at your school, including Alpha Epsilon Delta, the national honor society for health pre-professionals. Members help each other get ready for tests, along with hosting speakers and events to help gain knowledge and experience.
"I speak Spanish almost every day at work," says Dr. Carlson. "It 's what I use the most from my premed education." Joseph spent a semester in Chile. "Focusing on language, culture, and people challenged me in a me in ways that technical classes couldn't and was critical in my preparation for medical school. If you 're thinking about studying abroad, do it. Communication and understanding different cultures are crucial skills for anyone entering the medical field, and medical schools look for applicants who make the effort to broaden their horizons culturally."
Medical volunteer programs abroad are another option to gain both life and health-care related experiences. Students are placed in hospitals and clinics in both rural and urban settings where staff is inadequate. Work, with professional guidance, can include giving vaccinations and other tasks interacting directly with patients, as well as helping to make facilities cleaner and more accessible. Programs are normally for people aged 18 and older
Show that you're interested in other things besides schoolwork. Dr. Carlson says having outside interests makes you stand out (she plays violin in an orchestra). "It's OK to indicate some of these personal interests on your med school applications—they give the interviewers something to relate to you with," she says. "I interviewed one applicant who only got a C in biochemistry, but he wrote lots of letters to the admissions committee highlighting his other strengths. We accepted him, and he turned out to be a star."
"Medical schools like to see commitment in their applicants, be it to sports, work, or extracurricular activities," says McKenzie. "It 's easier to not join clubs and just do homework and relax, but devoting time now to extracurricular commitments is worth it in the long run. These experiences also give you good opportunities to get to know people who can write the letters of recommendation."
Joseph says to choose activities based on what works best for you. Aim for quality rather than quantity.
"There 's a lot of pressure to have as many leadership roles as possible and be involved in tons of student organizations. For me though, having a few deep and lasting experiences was the way to go. I chose to invest my time in research, improving my Spanish, and volunteering," she says.
Research the schools you're interested in and look at mission statements, so you know something about the institution that you can share at the interview. Practice answering interview questions. When you arrive, be courteous to everyone you meet at the interview, including the receptionist.
"Schools are interested in learning what kind of student and person you are," says McKenzie. Schools invest in students and are looking for a good fit.
If you need help with effective body language, knowing how to dress professionally or for other tips, check out your school's Career Services office, which may offer mock interview opportunities and other techniques to help you present your best self.
Avoid generic answers like "I want to help people." There's no one right answer. Be specific. Tell your story.
McKenzie's dream centers on helping people close to home, in an underserved area that suffers from chronic physician shortages. "I have always wanted to return to the Houghton-Hancock area, where I grew up, and to serve my rural community."
For Joseph, the dream centers on combining a passion for science with helping others in a direct way.
Dr. Carlson 's dream started when she was five years old and her sister was born with cystic fibrosis. She reminds applicants to go beyond that initial inspiration during application interviews and explain how you've prepared for a grueling process that is not for everyone. "After medical school comes residency, and then—for some—fellowship, academic track positions, publications, and navigating an ever-evolving health care system," says Dr. Carlson.
Dr. Carlson has two more important suggestions to help you successfully apply to medical school:
"This is an unwritten rule that everyone does and nobody ever told me until I was several years into my training," says Dr. Carlson. "If you want to go to a particular school, find a way to have one of your mentors or advisors reach out to the admissions committee on your behalf."
For example, if you wanted to go to the University of Michigan ask your advisor or another mentor to call the director of admissions or any other person they know and advocate for you. Email can also be effective, she says. "It's a bonus if your mentor/advisor actually has a personal contact at the medical school you're interested in. "There is a culture of 'I can vouch for this person' that goes very far in the medical world. A phone call won't get you in if your application is terrible, but if you're on the cusp of acceptance and someone makes a call on your behalf, it can give you the push you need to be accepted."
"It's OK to highlight the accomplishments you're proud of; put these in your required personal statement or find a way to work them into conversation during interviews. The key is to do it humbly but confidently: 'I was fortunate enough to win a teaching award from my time as a chemistry lab TA, and that's something I'm really proud of.' It's OK to be proud of your own achievements! Selectively highlighting a few make your application stand out from the rest."
Medical students must be dedicated and focused. "A significant amount of personal sacrifice comes along with the training, and if you don't have a great motivation, you won't find the sacrifice worth the reward," says Dr. Carlson. If you can answer yes to these questions, or you're willing to find the resources to work to develop any of these vital skills you could improve, you increase your chances of being able to accomplish what it takes to be accepted into medical school.
Compassionate people are kind. They are aware of suffering in the self and other living things, and they want to help alleviate suffering. Mature people are able to accept responsibility. They are considerate of others, patient, and supportive of others, among other qualities. Emotionally intelligent people are aware of their emotions. They can harness and apply their emotions to problem-solving and other tasks and manage emotions—like being able to cheer up yourself, or other people, or to infuse calm into a situation.
Hard-working people are conscientious about correctly performing duties and tasks on time. They are willing to put in the hours necessary to achieve goals.
High-achieving people are motivated to set and complete ambitious goals. They have a passion to excel in the field they choose to work in and are not daunted by obstacles.
Socially conscious people strive to stay informed and aware about the world around them, including how people interact with the economy, education, and both physical and social environments.
People with quantitative skills can perform analyses and other concrete and measurable tasks. Two examples of quantitative skills are data interpretation and math. People with qualitative skills are able to perform broad skills. Resilience and creativity are two examples of qualitative skills.
Michigan Tech's placement rate into medical school is 60 to 70 percent (well above the national average) and is nearly 100 percent for physical therapy school. Choose a pre-health profession and prepare for your future today.
Global Chiropody & Podiatry Market: Snapshot
Escalating number of sport injuries and diabetes patients is likely to generate promising demand opportunities in the global chiropody & podiatry market during the tenure of 2020 to 2030. Physiotherapy and surgery practices are two types of services available in the market for chiropody & podiatry.
An upcoming research report by Transparency Market Research on the chiropody & podiatry market intends to give inclusive analysis of drivers, trends, challenges, restraints, threats, and opportunities in this market. Moving forward, this report delivers reliable data on shares, volume, and revenues of the market for chiropody & podiatry. Thus, the study works as a helpful tool to gain complete synopsis of the chiropody & podiatry market for the forecast period of 2020 to 2030.
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The study performs segmentation of the global chiropody & podiatry market based on many important parameters such as type, application, and region. Based on application, the market for chiropody & podiatry is classified into hospitals, clinics, and others.
Global Chiropody & Podiatry Market: Growth Dynamics
The global chiropody & podiatry market is all set to trace prodigious curve of expansion during the period of forthcoming years. This growth is attributed to plethora of factors. Chiropody and podiatry refer to healthcare services that are used in the treatment of numerous health issues including ingrowing toenails and thickened toenails, dry skin, calluses, corns, verrucae, cracked heels, ulcers, blisters, arthritic foot care, and diabetes. Thus, increased number of all these health issues is likely to fuel the demand opportunities in the chiropody & podiatry market in the upcoming years.
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The chiropody & podiatry market is estimated to experience promising sales opportunities on the back of increased cases of sports injuries. In addition to this, the increased number of older population living in all worldwide locations is one of the key factors stimulating growth opportunities for vendors operating in the market for chiropody & podiatry.
Global Chiropody & Podiatry Market: Competitive Analysis
The global chiropody & podiatry market experiences presence of quite considerable number of active players. As a result, the competitive landscape of the market for chiropody & podiatry is moderately intense. Vendors working in this market are using diverse strategies to gain the leading position.
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Some of the key strategies executed by players in the chiropody & podiatry market include partnerships, mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, product launches, and collaborations. Apart from this, many companies working in this market are increasing investments in research and development activities. This move is helping vendors to Improve the services they offer. Owing to all these activities, the global chiropody & podiatry market is likely to develop at moderate pace during 2020–2030.
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The global podiatry market size was accounted at $xx billion in 2016 and is valued to reach $xx billion with a CAGR of xx% over the forecast period. Key factors that drive the growth of the global podiatry market in rising foot and ankle diseases. The growth of the global podiatry industry will be increased due to the rising chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, arthritis and diabetes and awareness about routine foot care and health. In addition, there are several effective initiatives taken by the Government for expanding the healthcare sector with the help of podiatry services which will upsurge the global podiatry market growth in the coming years.
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General podiatry mostly consists of treatment of diabetic foot ulcers, calluses, and corns, nail infection, and bunions. These are also the main segments in the services of podiatry. This is due to the increase in the occurrence of diabetes, increase in awareness about podiatry and the importance of foot care. Diabetes is the condition which leads to foot disorders and increase in diabetic population can lead to the growth of global podiatry industry. On the basis of facility, clinics are the main segments followed by hospitals and the various facilities such as nursing homes and home care organizations.
For treating the foot and ankle diseases, the most important method used in podiatry is laser treatment. Laser therapy is a combination of technology, physics, and biology. As per the research, one-third of podiatrists across the globe are using laser technology and over 50% of them consider laser treatment effective to treat fungus of the toenail and releasing symptoms. Main types of ankle and foot problems include athlete’s foot, warts, diabetic foot syndrome, foot infections, calluses or corns, and fungal infection. The occurrence of podiatry disease, health awareness for podiatry and developments in laser technology are the main factors involved in the growth of global podiatry market size.
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There are several initiatives taken by the government to increase the healthcare sector with including podiatry services which will expand the global podiatry market across the globe. Developing countries such as Brazil and China have formed their policies of healthcare to offer better entry to healthcare as podiatry services. With the help of the Government initiatives, global podiatry market is anticipated to boost the market during the forecast period.
Regions involved in the development of global podiatry market size are Latin America, North America, Europe, Middle East & Africa and the Asia Pacific. Increase in occurrence of diabetes due to health awareness and the standard of living are the main factors expanding the growth of podiatry market size. Europe is expected to create substantial podiatry market share. Asia Pacific is projected to increase with a steady CAGR over the forecast period.
World’s largest region for podiatry services is North America. It accounted for about 32% of global podiatry industry because of increasing population, expenditure on healthcare, availability of developed treatments for foot diseases and workforce. In podiatry industry, Western Europe is the second largest which accounts for 30% of global podiatry market share.
Players focusing on the development of the global podiatry market are Capron co Inc., Euroclinic Medi-Care Solutions, Eduard Gerlach GmbH, Namrol Group, Gharieni GmbH, Planmeca, Veritas Medical Solutions LLC, Sartorius AG, EKF Diagnostics, NSK Ltd., and Halmilton Medical Inc.
What to expect from the upcoming report on ‘Global Podiatry Market’:
– Projection of growth of the global podiatry market over the forecast period (2018-2025)
– Concerns and the growth areas in the podiatry industry
– Economic factors that encourage the market dynamics
– Trends, drivers, opportunities, restraints, and challenges in the development and use of podiatry
– The involvement of government and other private organizations that are inspiring the research and development of podiatry
– Study of the regional demographics that affect the market
– Information about the key players in the market and the initiatives were taken by them to Improve this market
– Study for the top geographical regions that are Latin America, North America, Europe, Middle East & Africa and the Asia Pacific
– Market analysis of the key players such as Capron co Inc., Euroclinic Medi-Care Solutions, Eduard Gerlach GmbH, Namrol Group, Gharieni GmbH, Planmeca and many more.
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Students learning medicine must learn a whole new language to allow them to express their clinical impressions to others accurately. In time, this becomes second nature and soon they can be heard babbling away confidently and sounding quite the part. Communication skills are a standard part of medical education and the teachers take great care to ensure that these newly found linguistic skills do not impinge on their communication with patients. Most seem to take this on board and do their utmost not to confuse patients.
With all of this good education going on, why is it that we hear of misunderstandings between doctors and patients? Do doctors really throw up verbal smokescreens to confound others? A recent paper from the University of Minnesota would suggest so.
A survey of 215 members of the public examined their understanding of some common phases used by doctors in their consultations. Words such as "your cancer screening test came back and the results were negative" were correctly interpreted by 97.7% of the people. However, only 21% correctly understood that a doctor saying their radiography was "impressive" was generally bad news. And "Have you been febrile?" was understood by just 9.3%.
The researchers concluded that medical jargon is alive and well and living in consulting rooms in Minnesota—and presumably a lot of other places as well.
Before we all take the view that doctors need yet more browbeating about their communication skills, let us look at this paper in context. The study participants were members of the public visiting the Minnesota State Fair. Presumably, they were looking forward to a day of candyfloss and helter-skelter rides rather than being accosted by researchers offering university-branded backpacks as inducements to participate. They were not expecting to be patients that day and may even have been there to get away from worries about health.
The questions were multiple choice, with no opportunity to ask for clarification. Medically qualified readers will all be familiar with patients who ask for immediate explanations of terms and most, I hope, will understand the power of the phrase: "By which I mean … "
Somehow, the study methods used by these researchers seem not to accurately replicate the conditions found in your average clinic and, in fairness, they acknowledge this.
Why use certain terms and phrases in the first place? Oddly, the answer is not wholly straightforward. Today's internet-enabled patient is better informed than ever. Popular TV programs show doctors and patients in action, using copious quantities of medical jargon for realism and artistic effect. The public lap it up.
In the clinic, patients like to be treated as adults and communicated with accordingly. They don't want to be infantilized or patronized—and they certainly let doctors know if they are made to feel that way. Skilled doctors know this and will introduce terms followed (hopefully) by immediate explanations to ensure understanding. Too slow with an explanation and the wily patient will ask: "Can I have that in English please?"
Whatever the words used and however they are put, some patients are not in a position to take it all in. Fear and anxiety cloud the comprehension of messages in any consultation, and this must be accounted for. There should be adequate adjuncts, such as information leaflets, web links, and that all-important opportunity to ask questions at the time or on a subsequent occasion.
Nobody should leave a healthcare consultation confused and none the wiser because of the use of medical jargon, and none should be spoken down to or patronized. The skill of the doctor is to find the happy medium and make patients feel informed and respected—even if they can't always offer a cure.
This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.
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