Doctor Career Information
What a Doctor does
The core function of a doctor seems to be quite simple - that of treating and healing people suffering from diseases or injuries. As a doctor you'll examine the patients, ascertain the cause of the disease or injury, prescribe medical tests if needed, interpret the results of medical tests, diagnose either on the basis of the medical tests and experience, prescribe medicines and administer treatment. Apart from treating and healing diseases and injuries, you'll also advice patients on preventive measures.
Doctors perform their functions in conjunction with other health care professionals like nurses, medical technologists and others. But the final responsibility lies with the doctor. So, the profession is of precision.
The margin of error is zero, or has to be minimal. As a doctor, you should understand that. There are no second chances and no trial and error please! A single wrong treatment can further aggravate the problem or even result in death.
If the study for MBBS was not gruelling enough you could opt to specialise or even super specialise in one or more areas of medical science. Some areas are called clinical specialisations because they involve direct treatment of patients and some others are called basic clinical science areas because those fields do not involve direct treatment of patients.This is an important information for those who wish to become a doctor.
Some of the clinical specialisations are:
• ENT (Ear, Nose, and Throat)
• Obstetrics & Gynaecology
• Venereal Diseases (or Skin and Venereal Diseases),
• Community Medicine
• Critical Care Medicine
• Forensic Medicine
• Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
• Radiology (or Radio diagnosis)
• Sports Medicine
That's not all. As a doctor, you can better your prospect with a super specialisation under your belt. They include:
• Cardio-thoracic Surgery
• Paediatric Surgery
• Plastic Surgery
• Endocrine Surgery
General and multi speciality hospitals - both the government hospitals and corporate hospitals
Speciality hospitals and critical care centres which treat patients with emergency and multiple health problems, injuries, etc.
Polyclinics and speciality clinics
Medical Colleges, which offer courses like MBBS, MD, MS, DM, M.Ch., etc.
Industrial hospitals generally attached to large factories
Health care centres run by governments and private organisations in various district headquarters, small towns and even in villages
Pharmaceutical companies in their sales support functions, medical documentation function, or as an advisor in the Medical Advisory Board after you have 4-5 years of experience
Sport Medicine specialists can find jobs at the sports authority of India (SAI). Nowadays, inclusion of a sports medicine specialist is a must whenever a team goes for a tour abroad or when there is a national camp held within India.
It's a rosy and bright future folks. The healthcare industry as a whole is booming all over the world. The corporate hospitals which are coming up everywhere in the country will drive the growth of this industry.
Another factor that will boost the healthcare sector in India is the opening up of the medical insurance field, meaning that the Central Government has allowed private investment in the field. As of now, the corporate and private healthcare establishments are very expensive for the middle class population. So, as more and more people will be able to bear the cost of modern medicare, more and more private healthcare establishments will come up.
The Central and State Governments are also planning to follow WHO's (World Health Organisation) norm of one hospital bed for every 300 people. To meet this target, more than 1,50,000 beds are needed as of now.
So this means that the demand for qualified healthcare professionals will increase. No wonder Medical Science is touted as one of the most prospective professions of the next decade.
Abilities & Traits Required
You have to be:
• Understanding and caring
• Urge to serve mankind
• Above average analytical and reasoning abilities
Good understanding and a strong liking for biological sciences. As a Dcotor, you must have a strong ability to understand, comprehend, memorise and recall scientific theories, facts and hypothesis.
Other qualities needed are:
• Investigative and critical thinking
• Patience and cool temperament
To practise as a doctor you got to have at least an MBBS degree. After MBBS you can go for a specialisation in MD/MS (Doctor of Medicine/Master of Surgery).
One emerging lucrative field is sports medicine. In India, sports medicine is taught at the Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports, Patiala.
If you want to super specialise, then you have to do a DM (Diploma in Medicine, actually a Post-doctoral level course)/ MD/M.Ch. (Master of Chiropractor)/MS.
Alternatively, you can do a diploma in a particular speciality after your MBBS. You could attempt examinations for becoming a Diplomat of National Board (which offers certificates equivalent to MD/MS).
You can venture out to UK for FRCS (Fellow of Royal College of Surgeon) or MRCP (Member of Royal College of Physicians) or related qualification after your MBBS.
Similarly, you can also go to USA after your MBBS/MD/MS to obtain a specialised certificate or diploma. All these will better your career prospects.
As a Doctor, you have to make a very humble beginning once you pass your MBBS. You will have to work as an intern (what they call a rotating intern meaning that you will be assigned duties in multiple departments) for a year to get your registration with the Medical Council of India. As an intern, you'll earn a stipend in the range of Rs 5000-13500 a month. Registration is a must; otherwise you will not be able to practice.
Then you will have to be a House Staff/Junior Doctor in a hospital or other health care establishment with a salary ranging of Rs 25000-30000 a month. If you get a job in a medical college as a Clinical Assistant, then you can expect to get Rs 20000 a month.
But after this period is over, you can look forward to a rising income curve. After completing MD/MS, you can get a job as a Medical Officer/Senior House Staff/ Senior resident. This again depends on whether you are just doing a job or enrolled in a super specialization course like DM/M.Ch. Salary in these jobs will be about Rs 35000 –50000 gross per month to start with.
A job in a medical college as a Clinical Tutor will fetch you about Rs 15000-30000 per month. In corporate hospitals and other private healthcare establishments, you can expect a higher salary after your MD/MS. If you are a Surgeon, you will get allowance for conducting surgery or assisting a senior surgeon. After your super specialization, your salary will shoot up to Rs 30000 – 50000 a month.
Of course, corporate and private healthcare establishments pay you much more depending on your specialization and years of experience. You can expect anywhere between Rs 40000 - 70000 a month.
Thereafter, everything depends on your performance and reputation. If you build up a reputation, your earnings will be substantial. A senior doctor in a corporate hospital can get anywhere between Rs 10 - 12 lakhs a year. In a government hospital, you will get about Rs 40000-50000 a month.
The minimum, a good specialist (with a few years of experience) working with a club team would earn is Rs. 50000/- to 60000/- a month.
In a pharmaceutical company your pay will be in the range of Rs 25000-60000 or more a month.
After you make a name for yourself you will be working in several establishments and your gross earning can be more than Rs 1 lakh a month. A super specialty surgeon can mint as much as Rs 1 lakh or more in a single day and build a few crores a year!