How To Become A Pediatrician: Step By Step
Published April 13th, 2021
Some aspiring doctors or med students are still unsure what medical specialty they want to take up. In some cases, people even change their minds and switch to a different field of study halfway through their residency or internship programs. For others, they are already aware of what they are passionate about in the medical field. If you are interested in providing medical care for children, Pediatrics is the place for you. Pediatricians focus on diagnosing and addressing the health concerns of all underage patients, from babies and toddlers to teenagers going through puberty. They have a heavy workload like other medical doctors and work just as much as any physician. This article will guide your journey on how to become a pediatrician.
Becoming A Pediatrician: What Do You Need?
Most careers will require a bachelor’s degree in a related field before becoming a professional. Becoming a pediatrician is no different. A person who wishes to take up pediatrics as their medical specialty will have to undergo a 4-year course in college or earn enough prerequisites to apply for an MD program. Those who have a passion for pediatrics can opt to take a Child Psychology course or something similar that sufficiently covers the subject to jumpstart their knowledge.
Attend Medical School
Becoming a medical doctor of any specialty requires an MD degree. Before entering medical school, aspiring pediatricians must do thorough research and background studies on the best medical schools. A background check will let them know what to expect regarding the school’s standards, grade requirements, and success rate of graduate pediatricians. Knowing which school is the most well-known is not necessarily a reason to apply to that particular school. A great medical school is where you feel at ease in learning everything needed in becoming a pediatrician. Having an easy learning process from a good school can make entering the professional world less intimidating.
A 4-year course in medical school lets students undergo learning programs that give them a more in-depth knowledge of basic sciences such as pathology, anatomy, neuroscience, and the like. Students are offered an opportunity to face real-life medical situations and be guided by professional physicians, surgeons, nurses, and other experts, during the final years of medical school. Facing real medical scenarios help students get a clearer image of what it is like to be an actual doctor as they deal with countless cases from different specialties. Proper training also allows students not to feel too much pressure when they begin their physician journey.
Next to achieving an MD degree is applying for a residency program under pediatrics. A residency program will build pediatricians who are efficient in caring for young patients. This program will most likely form a strong knowledge on the field that can be applied in properly diagnosing and treating patients. Doctors develop the skills needed to excel by providing them enough training and experience in diagnosing children, treating their symptoms, and interacting professionally. A residency program contributes to the preparation of students in taking the next step towards becoming dedicated doctors.
Pediatric Fellowship Program
Choosing a medical specialty to pursue may also require you to take a subspecialty fellowship program. A fellowship program trains doctors in another chosen profession for a period of 2 to 3 years. This program lets pediatricians garner knowledge on other fields related to their specialties, such as cardiology, pulmonology, and the like.
License and Certificate to Practice
After having gone through the list of programs and requirements needed to become a pediatrician, the next step is to acquire a license and certification from the state. These requirements will give doctors the privilege to practice their chosen profession and treat patients. The process of obtaining a license and certificate consists of completing the previously mentioned requirements of an MD degree, a residency program, and passing the Medical Licensing Examination to be qualified.
Once a person has acquired the license and training needed to pursue their passion in pediatrics, the employment possibilities are endless. Licensed pediatricians can decide whether to work in a hospital, do consults in a clinic, or go down the research field. Pediatricians have many opportunities to help them select what kind of future will make their lives more comfortable. Knowing the requirements and process on how to become a pediatrician can help get a headstart on planning for a career and future.
About The Author
As a professional writer at many renowned websites Krizzia Paolyn has covered a wide range of topics in many industries. Her knack for uncovering important truths and conducting thorough research on each topic she writes about has helped thousands of people across the world.