Questions about Family Physicians

Question: I am having a difficult time deciding exactly to which field of medicine I would like to dedicate my life. I have narrowed it down to Sports Medicine or General Medicine (Family Practice). What made you realize that being a family physician was exactly what you wanted to do?

Answer: I enjoyed all of my courses in medical school. I found all aspects of medicine fascinating—no matter what age of the patient or what type of medical problem we studied. I also enjoyed learning about the influences that lifestyle and social factors have on people's health. When I spent time with a family physician, I saw how therapeutic the relationship between the patient and the doctor can be.

In my own life, I have found Family Medicine to be a very rewarding career. I have delivered babies, cared for children, and taken care of patients who were dying of incurable diseases. The ability to touch people's lives during the good times and the bad times is a blessing.

If you are interested in Sports Medicine, you should know that many family physicians choose to get additional training in this field and provide all aspects of athletes' care. While injury prevention and rehabilitation are important parts of sports medicine, if an athlete has asthma or other medical problems their family physician will be well-trained to deal with those problems, too!

Amy L. McGaha, M.D.
Assistant Division Director
Division of Medical Education
American Academy of Family Physicians
11400 Tomahawk Creek Parkway
Leawood, Kansas 66211
Phone: 800/274-2237
913/906-6000, ext 6710
Fax: 913/906-6289
E-mail: amcgaha@aafp.org


Question: What are the incomes, requirements of college courses and out of college, and the percentage of people who graduate and get a job right out of school?

Answer: The average starting salary for family physicians is $125,000. To become a family physician, you must complete 4 years of undergraduate (college) work, 4 years of medical school, and 3 years of residency. More information about specific course requirements for admission to medical school can be found at www.aamc.org . Family physicians have no trouble finding a job, as they care for all ages of patients with all types of medical problems. According to a large physician recruiting firm, family medicine is the 4 th most recruited specialty.

 Amy L. McGaha, M.D.
Assistant Division Director
Division of Medical Education
American Academy of Family Physicians
11400 Tomahawk Creek Parkway
Leawood, Kansas 66211
Phone: 800/274-2237
913/906-6000, ext 6710
Fax: 913/906-6289
E-mail: amcgaha@aafp.org

 

 

 
courtesy of Saint Michael's College
   
 
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