It is the ultimate goal of many parents to raise at least one of their kids to become a medical doctor. Not only medical doctors are well compensated financially, this career is also one that demands respect and admiration. There are many different types of medical doctors. Among the most notable ones are family practitioners, pediatricians, psychiatrists and surgeons. It is important to differentiate medical doctors from medical specialists like dentists, optometrists, and pharmacists. The latter cannot diagnose and treat people for general illnesses and diseases; their scope of responsibility is limited to their area of specialization.
The profession of family doctor is the best medical career for independent-minded people. This doctor job only has modest attachment to local hospitals. Family physicians offer their services directly to the public, work on their own terms, and have their own offices or clinics. The occupation of general practitioner is a very personal one. Depending on the location, a typical family doctor may see as many as several dozen patients on a busy day. To be successful at this doctor job, candidates for this profession will have to possess great people skills in addition to being a skilled doctor.
Pediatrics is another fine medical career to pursue. Pediatricians, who are sometimes called baby doctors, deal mostly with children’s health. Much like family practitioners, these physicians offer their services directly to the public giving them a high level of independence. A career as a pediatrician is generally a highly satisfied one. In fact, a recent survey conducted by the American Academy of Pediatrics puts the job satisfaction rate at 85%. The only downside is the fact most pediatricians will have to make themselves available outside of regular work hours. This is understandable as children’s health is notoriously fickle, and new conditions may arise at any time.
Another good doctor job is psychiatrist. Note that psychology is not an equivalent of psychiatry. While both disciplines study mental disorders, a psychiatrist is a full-fledged medical doctor who can diagnose and treat patients as well as prescribe drugs. A psychologist also studies the brain, but does not possess sufficient knowledge of medicine to offer medical advice or treatment; they perform their work mainly through therapy and counseling. As a result, the average salary of a psychiatrist is a whole lot higher than that of a psychologist. Psychiatrists work for hospitals as well as private clinics.
The best doctor job is undoubtedly the profession of surgeon. These physicians are trained to execute the most difficult task in the medical profession, which is to perform surgery on the human body. More often than not, the patient’s life is literally in the hands of the operating surgeon. One can think of a surgeon career as a series of taxing challenges, where failure is not an option. Hence, it may not come as a surprise that surgeons are the highest paid professionals in the medical sphere. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a surgeon is about $219,770 which is higher than that of other medical doctors. Obviously, not many people actually qualify to pursue this profession. But for those who do, it is certainly an exciting and rewarding challenge.
1) Vincent Iannelli (MD). Interview with a Pediatrician. About.Com
2) Occupational Employment and Wages (May 2009) – Surgeons. Bureau of Labor Statistics