There are around 27,550 pediatricians in America today. Are you thinking of adding to that number? Pediatricians are a critical part of the healthcare system – they care for all aspects of children’s health. This includes diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of injuries and illnesses in everyone up to the age of 18,
However, becoming a pediatrician isn’t an easy journey. Before committing to a career in pediatrics, you need to have all the information. So if you’re wondering what the benefits of being a pediatrician are, you’ve come to the right place.
Read on to find out more (although be warned, you’ll be fully convinced that this is the job for you by the end!)
The first, and for many people, the main reason to become a pediatrician is job satisfaction. Of course, everyone goes into the medical profession to help people, and pediatrics is no exception.
As a pediatrician, you have the opportunity to save, shape, and transform lives. Over the course of your patient’s treatment, you’ll be able to watch children get from hospital back to home.
If you love interacting with cute kids and helping them fulfill their potentials, then pediatrics is for you.
Once you’re qualified as a pediatrician, you’re almost guaranteed a job: unemployment rates are around 0.5%. Initially, you’ll work alongside more experienced pediatricians, but you can quickly work your way up the ladder to work independently.
As a pediatrician, there’s no shortage of career advancement opportunities. You can choose to work in general medicine or specialize in a specific branch of pediatrics.
Most pediatricians start off in acute hospital settings, but you can always go private and work in a clinic. Furthermore, hospitals often offer pediatricians chief medical officer or medical advisor roles.
Whichever way you look, there will always be an advancement opportunity if you train in pediatrics.
One of the advantages of working as a pediatrician is the vast range of work environments and locations available. You can work in a standard hospital, a children’s hospital, or a clinic, or you can start your own practice.
Additionally, there is flexibility around the type of work you do; as pediatrics deals with all aspects of children’s health, there’s plenty to choose from. Pediatricians can work in general pediatrics or specialize in surgery, cardiology, and neurology to manage more advanced child health conditions.
Generally, specialist pediatricians have greater flexibility than general pediatric doctors, and around one-quarter of pediatricians work part-time.
Most medical professionals’ compensation packages include regular vacation time and sick pay, and pediatricians are no exception. Vacation is usually three to four weeks for pediatricians who work in hospitals or clinics. However, you can create your own timetable if you operate your own clinic or practice.
Salary and Perks
Next, the factor that no one mentions but is on everyone’s mind: salary.
Pediatricians tend to earn around double the national average, at nearly $200,000. However, a pediatrician’s income is among the lowest when compared to that of other specialized doctors.
Health insurance, dental and vision coverage, paid time off, and retirement benefits are all standard benefits for pediatricians. However, if you’re searching for a competitive package, also look out for life insurance, paid professional memberships, CPD reimbursement, and employee wellness services.
The world of medicine is constantly evolving, so it’s your responsibility as a pediatrician to keep up to date with all the latest evidence and protocols. So, forget stagnating in a tedious job – every day you’ll learn something new.
You’ll be able to attend multiple training days, conferences, and experience days to keep upskilling yourself. Furthermore, you’ll have access to all-sorts of world-leading CPD tools and paediatric software to keep your knowledge up to date.
So, if you think pediatrics is the path you want to follow, do you know what to do next? The journey to becoming a skilled pediatrician is lengthy but rewarding.
There are four key steps you’ll need to follow to get the benefits of pediatrics:
1. Get Your Bachelors
First, go to college and complete your Bachelor’s degree. If you already have a Bachelor’s, but it’s not in a science field, don’t worry. It’s possible to apply to med school with any subject as long as you can gain adequate experience in a medical setting.
2. Pass the MCAT Exam
The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is the exam you need to take before applying to medical school. The MCAT is notoriously difficult, so make sure to start studying early.
3. Go to Medical School
You can apply to medical school through AMCAS – you’ll need to demonstrate experience and competency in all the required areas. Once you’ve been accepted, ensure you work hard each day of your training.
To legally practice medicine, you’ll need to take the United States Medical Licensing Exams. These graduation exams will test you on the knowledge you learned each semester of med school.
4. Do Your Pediatric Residency
A typically pediatric residence lasts three years. However, it’ll be longer if you choose to specialize. Your residency days will test all your areas of knowledge, and you’ll graduate from residency as a skilled pediatrician.
Why Becoming a Pediatrician Should Be Your Next Move
That’s the brief guide to why becoming a pediatrician is rewarding, fulfilling, and lucrative career choice. Hopefully, this article will help you decide if you are on the fence.
So, what are you waiting for? Whatever stage of your career in medicine you’re at, it’s time to take the plunge and apply for the next step.
Did you find this article helpful? If so, make sure to check out our other posts for all things business, careers, medicine, and more!