Doctors help patients in hospitals, medical practices, and healthcare organizations around the world. They diagnose a wide variety of illnesses and treat injuries for several patients each day, and they also provide advice when it's needed. The most common daily duties that a doctor has may include:
Greeting patients by name and developing professional relationships with them
Asking patients questions about their health history
Assessing a patient's health records
Communicating with other health care staff to get help and desired results
Updating the medical records of each patient with examination results and other facts
Delivering good news and bad news to patients
Ordering tests and exams that other specialists or health care staff will complete
Adding new treatments to medical charts
Recommending plans of treatment based on research and knowledge
Answering questions that patients may have about their health or medical condition
Candidates who enjoy have a strong interest in medicine, great people skills and a great deal of fortitude may thrive as doctors. Doctors need to have compassion, well-developed leadership skills, patience and physical stamina.
Doctor Job Education Requirements
The road to becoming a doctor is a long one, and it requires many years of schooling. More specifically, doctors must first complete a bachelor's degree then go to medical school. Some schools do offer programs that combine both undergraduate studies and medical school into a program that will last around six to seven years. Medical schools are very competitive, so aspiring doctors should strive to achieve academic excellence and become involved with a variety of after-school activities.
If doctors are pursuing a specialty, they will then need an additional three to eight years for continuing studies and internships after graduating from medical school. That means that one may need to commit to over a decade of schooling in order to be a doctor with certain specializations. Those who hope to work in the health care field without the commitment to such a strenuous education may want to pursue nursing careers, including hospital nurse practitioner jobs and licensed practical nurse jobs.
Doctor Job Market
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that there will an estimated 18 percent job growth for doctor jobs from 2012 to 2022. That's a more rapid increase than most other occupations will have. This also means that there will be approximately 814,700 doctor jobs in 2022. The responsibilities that a doctor has and the time that needs to be spent with each patient may change along with advances in technology.
Doctor Job Salary Information
Doctors earned an average annual salary of approximately $220,942, while doctors who had gone on to acquire medical specializations earned a median annual salary of $396,233. Anesthesiologists tend to earn the highest salary, which averages over $430,000 per year. Although doctors do have handsome salaries, they do have to invest a lot of money into their education, so many doctors start their careers in debt. Additionally, doctors may also have to work nights, weekends and on call in order to earn the higher salaries.