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Is medical education and medical training for US doctors too long? Show more Show less
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Medical professions are typically regarded with great awe and fascination. In most countries, becoming a doctor is the highest form of academic achievement and it is a source of great pride for individuals and their families. In America, it takes anywhere from 11-16 years to become a doctor. Some would argue that such a level of training and education is necessary. They are also fairly compensated for their efforts. Others would disagree by showing how places like India and Europe have significantly fewer training requirements but still produce capable and adept doctors. Why do people have such contrasting views on the topic and why is doctorhood in America so fiercely debated?

No, such a high level of education and training is necessary for top-notch healthcare services. Show more Show less

Doctors have to make decisions every day regarding people's lives. Every surgeon, specialist and primary care doctor needs to have enough training and education to take on this responsibility. This process should not be rushed.
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America continually produces the best doctors because of such training measures

The 11-16 year education and training requirement in America yields a committed workforce. Most people in the healthcare industry are driven by a desire to care for people, not money or status-driven reasons. They form some of the best hospitals and healthcare facilities in the entire world. Most of the top hospitals are concentrated in America and many revolutionary medical breakthroughs have been accomplished here.
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The Argument

74% of all Americans have a positive view of doctors.[1] Most would regard doctorhood as a noble and reputed profession. Such positive reviews are earned by American doctors. Their 8 years of schooling combined with 4+ years of residency adequately prepares them for the long hours, stressful duties, and various medications and treatments they need to familiarize themselves with. While the title of "best doctor" is a subjective one, in the field of healthcare, one of the most comforting things to know is that one's doctor is reliable, caring, and committed. In America, the system is designed in such a way that only the most dedicated students are compelled to become doctors. In other countries where only 5 years of education are necessary, many enter the profession hoping to build their family name, status in society or even solely for the high salaries. But in America, with 11-16 years of schooling, many such candidates are dissuaded. This means most current doctors are in the field because they are passionate about it. This is clearly evident in many statistics regarding American doctors and hospitals. In America, 95% of all physicians were likely to continue as one for the rest of their life.[2] Hospitals such as The Johns Hopkins Hospital, Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, and New York-Presbyterian Hospital are globally recognized as some of the best hospitals.[3] The dedication of the staff and the excellent training of the doctors help them to achieve such recognition. The training system in America produces high-quality results.

Counter arguments

While countries with shorter educational periods tend to have more medical school candidates, their admissions process is likely to be just as competitive. Most of the people in these countries are also passionate and driven about healthcare. For instance, in India, where 5-year medical school programs exist, the average medical school acceptance rate is less than 1/10 of 1%. [4] Such competitive standards mean that only the most qualified and hard-working students gain admission. Hospitals that are comprised of such people are also likely to provide high-quality services.

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Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.pewresearch.org/science/2019/08/02/findings-at-a-glance-medical-doctors/source.html
  2. https://www.ama-assn.org/practice-management/physician-health/physicians-join-medicine-heal-and-commitment-lasting/source.html
  3. https://health.usnews.com/health-care/best-hospitals/articles/best-hospitals-honor-roll-and-overview/source.html
  4. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-india-medicine-education-specialrepor/special-report-why-indias-medical-schools-are-plagued-with-fraud-idUSKBN0OW1NM20150617#:~:text=According%20to%20the%20registrar's%20office,one%2Dtenth%20of%20one%20percent./source.html

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This page was last edited on Monday, 17 Aug 2020 at 17:30 UTC

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