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Is medical education and medical training for US doctors too long?

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?

Yes, medical education and medical training requirements are too excessive.

In most European and Asian countries, medical students tend to skip undergrad and enter 5-year medical schools. Similar measures need to be taken in America so that more people will enter the healthcare industry and not feel burdened by the time and cost of training.

Most doctors are still in debt, years after entering their profession

After 11-16 years of schooling and training, most doctors are exhausted by their efforts and exasperated by the amount of money they owe. Student debt in America has been skyrocketing for the last few years and doctors, generally, have the highest amount of debt among the population. Simply lowering the number of years required to become a doctor can turn the tide against debt and financial stress.

Other countries are able to shorten their training period and produce adept doctors

Many countries around the world only require 5-year educational programs. The UK and India are prominent examples of this system. Such countries are still able to produce amazing doctors and have world-renown medical facilities and hospitals. This is an indication that America can also shorten the training period and still be a world leader in medicine.

It discourages underrepresented groups from entering the medical industry

The expenses associated with such a long period of schooling and training can easily discourage minority groups from entering the medical field. It is important for any field including medicine to be diverse and representative of the population. We must fix any systematic issue that is preventing the field from becoming more diverse.

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

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.

Doctors are handsomely compensated for their long training and excellent services

Doctors receive some of the highest salaries in America. Some doctors' yearly salaries are higher than people's entire life savings. This money is hard-earned and doctors deserve it for the tremendous sacrifices they make. Their training and education justify the amount of money doctors earn and this process should not be shortened.

Such a huge moral responsibility should not be placed on them without sufficient training

Doctors have one of the most demanding responsibilities. They are in charge of the very lives of people and their actions can help or hurt families and societies. People should not be thrown into such demanding situations without appropriate training and education.

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.

This page was last edited on Monday, 17 Aug 2020 at 17:07 UTC

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