Looking at all the options now
After my old pre-med advisor told me to not count on getting into MD school in the US I’ve been looking into what the other options are. I’ve never looked much into the alternatives, and quite frankly, didn’t know they existed. What I’ve unearthed in the course of this research has made me hopeful and excited about applying instead of fearful and worried. Make no mistake, I’m still aiming for the top(the MD schools in the US), but it’s nice to know that I have other options to fall back on.
Osteopathic Schools: Holistic Approach
Looking further into osteopathic medicine(DO) has left me both excited and hesitant about the possibilities it holds. I was encouraged by the fact that many DO schools’ focus is on primary care(as that’s what I’d like to ultimately do). I love the idea of treating the patient as a whole and not as an isolated group of body parts and systems that are diseased. I’m sure many MDs look at the patient as a whole as well, but it’s nice to know that the curriculum will actively promote such thinking.
Osteopathic Schools: OMM
When I researched Osteopathic manipulative medicine(OMM) my reaction was mixed. I liked the techniques in so far that they might have applications to neck and back pain management, much like a chiropractor would do. I think of that as a little bonus that one might use for patients if they want it, but I don’t really claim to know since I’ve never trained in it nor have I used it. I didn’t like OMM’s inclusion of some things that were…well…outdated and unproven scientifically. I like things that are well supported and tested. Some of the things I read didn’t seem as credible. We’ll see I guess. I’d like to get a chance to shadow a DO to see if/how they use their uniquely DO-based skills in daily practice. Put that one on the to-do list.
Foreign Med Schools
After looking extensively into Caribbean and international MD schools, I have determined that it is not for me. For one, my grades will probably be good enough to get into a DO school even if it means re-applying a second time. Secondly, the risks involved in getting to practice seem to far overshadow the opportunity the foreign schools offer. The changes being made to the match process makes it sound like it’ll be harder for foreign graduates to match in the US. That’s all in addition to the increasing number of US med school graduates with no increase in residency spots. This will make competition even higher even without the handicap of being a foreign grad. If I still can’t get into a DO school after two tries I might consider a foreign school, but it is highly highly unlikely. At that point I’d be more adapt to re-evaluate my career choices.
Questions for you
What do you think about backup options? Do you think that DO schools deserve to be called such or can they stand on their own as a first option? What about Caribbean MD schools?