View Full Version : ashamed of FP?
11-19-2003, 12:43 PM
Has anyone else experienced the negative connotations brought by when you say you want to go in FP? So far I'm most interested in family medicine, yet I find on rotations or when someone asks me what I want to go into, I feel ashamed to say FP. I feel like there is this black cloud or something over the field and other people look down on those who go into FP. I have heard many times students/residents/doctors say that people who go into FP generally do it because they have no other options. They try to insinuate that FP is a poor field of medicine. Then that only makes me feel worse because I want to go into FP, but I'm too ashamed of myself to admit it to others :( Is there something wrong with me?
11-19-2003, 01:13 PM
First of all, if you are so set on doing FP, you should want to do it deep down from your heart. Do you just love FP so much that you will be happy with it the rest of your life? If this is indeed the case, who are they to tell you otherwise? It is what YOU want to do with YOUR life that's important. If they tell you otherwise, you can laugh with them and nod with them, but dont let that sway you from what you set out to accomplish. If they ask you what you want to do, look them right in the eyes and say FP loud and proud. I, for one, have respect for those people, as opposed to people who lie about what specialty they want to go into just to "impress the team."
Unfortunately, there are some very crass, highly stereotypical people in the field of medicine today who does not watch their mouths. It is all too common to see, for example, surgery peeps knocking on FP or psychiatry. It is poor form to stereotype and criticize a collegue in another field - let along the entire field, and doing so only reflect poorly of them. So really, take what other people in other field say about a field with a grain of salt.
11-19-2003, 04:25 PM
I agree. I could care less if anybody looks down on me because I say I want to go into FP (I am torn between that and pediatrics right now). I tell everyone what I want to do. I wouldn't be ashamed. FP's are needed everywhere.
BTW, the doctor I did my FP rotation with was first in his class at OU-COM, so he for one had many options, and chose FP. Everyone told him he should go into surgery or rads, or said "why are you doing FP?" and he told them it was what he thought he'd love to do. Don't be ashamed of doing what you know in your heart you want to do.
11-19-2003, 08:52 PM
In my past I never considered FP, lately I have been considering it, don't know, i do like surgery and doing procedures, but one advantage of FP is that you get to do and see a little bit of everything! And so far, I like everything, can't really choose, so FP might be a good pick for a person like myself.
Now, let me tell you a little bit about why FP's are looked down upon sometimes.
First off, in major hospitals, they have to compete with other residents. You might think going to a big fancy schmancy hospital for FP residency is great but guess what, when one of your patients comes to the ER with DKA, you're gonna turn it over to internal medicine. etc. etc. etc. you do nothing thanks to the fact that other residency programs are in the hospital. My advice, do FP at a hospital that has an unopposed program. You will get to do and see lots
Second, FP's in the city are almost useless, especially now that PPO's are becoming a big thing. Why in the world would you ever visit your FP if you have say irritable bowel if you do not need their referral to see a GI specialist? Turns out int he big cities, FP's are going to see medicare and medicaid patients. Try to have a thriving practice doing this? I don't think so? But these FP practices are clinics that are run bya residency program, they get funding for each resident, so they can survive. My advice, do FP ina rural or small suburban area. If you are one of the only docs around for miles, your general public is going to rely on you to do everything that you feel comfortable handling before you pass them onto a specialist.
Now, unfortunately, yes, it is true, many people that have little options go into FP. I hate to say it but it is true. If I had a nickel for every time I heard, "why do I need to know this, I am only want to be an FP?" "who cares if I fail my boards, I just want to be an FP!" "My grades suck, so waht, I just want to be an FP", I'd be rich! But these are the same people that are lazy in residency. My wife is an FP resident and I can tell you in her program, people will do whatever it takes to get out of doing a delivery, doing a c-section, scrubbing in on a surgical case, they just don't care. Now for somebody like her who wants to do a little of everything, many of her preceptors have already told her, "nobody else in your FP program takes the time to do these things, so why should you?" It is frustrating for her.
So to sum it up, if you like a little bit of everything, and truely want to do a little bit of everything when you go out and proactice medicine, then FP is a choice for you, maybe IM if you don't want to to any OB, but FP is not a bad choice! Yes, they may be some lazy and stupid people that are FP's but for every lazy and stupid FP I can find a lazy and stupid surgeon.
So go do FP if you want! Don't be ashamed if its what you want to do! Remember. its your patients that matter. IF they think you're a great doc, then that is all that counts.
11-20-2003, 10:24 AM
Dont be ashamed to be an FP. I too have felt the "attitude" from residents and attendings alike. It is sad that there is such a negative connotation with FP, but it has developed over the years from various factors. It is obviously easy to get a position in most any FP program. There are many who use FP as a back-up, or fall back when they can't get into ENT, Radiology, Derm, or others.
Sadly, many FPs have either allowed or chosen a career path with clinic only - no hospital, no OB, no procedures.
There are many who CHOOSE FP for the lifestyle - they can still have great hours, little call, even part time. Many specialists/surgeons dont respect this.
My suggestion - find role models in family medicine. If you are interested in rural practice there are huge opportunities for you to have a full spectrum practice with lots of procedures and OB.
Join AAFP. www.aafp.org Join their list serves.
11-20-2003, 10:34 AM
irrespective of whichever specialty you go into, you can always find other specialists who will look down upon/make fun of your specialty. This holds true for medicine and surgery, psychiatry, and people even make fun of the subspecialist surgeons and so on. Whenever you are an expert in one field, everyone else who isn't in your field but has to manage your expert medical condition is going to look like a doofus. I think that one reason that FP's and psychiatrists get a slightly worse rep then other specialties (over say ER, who is often expected to have the same broad knowledge base of an FP making them a jack of all trades but expert in none) is because their avg salary is lower then most other specialties, and so some people can't seem to grasp why anybody else would voluntarily go into it. Remember that your life/rep will dramatically change as an attending though, when all these subspecialist will be taking you out to dinner and sending you holiday cards so that they can keep getting referrals from you. If you are still getting any slack from them as an attending, you can just stop referring patients to them and get your fp colleagues to do the same and they will be SOL.
11-22-2003, 02:31 PM
Hey...if some attending or resident makes fun of the specialty you want to go into....just look them in the eyes and say f@#K off!!!!!!
Hah...isn't that what we'd all like to say. Truly though, there are a lot of attendings that like to bash everything. I was telling one about the very nice Eye Emergency Room at a OPH program i visitied and he said "yeah...for that emergency LASIK..haha"
See...people will poopoo on whatever specialty you choose. Just tell them if it wasn't for FP's then they'd be seeing a lot of patients they wouldn't want to "waste" their precious time with.
Why do doctors have to be such pricks?!?!?!?!?
11-23-2003, 01:28 PM
Although I am going into IM, I have tremendous respect for FPs. I had a hard time chosing between FP and IM; however, I plan to practice in an urban area, so IM made more sense. Several top students in my class (including two or three AOA folks) are going into FP, proving that top students do go into FP. Crypt
11-25-2003, 07:50 PM
I was thinking about FP and emergency. I'll chose FP because I know where I want to practice now and I'll never feel like I'm choosing the easy way out or the less prestigious. I feel confident in my reasons to practice medicine. I liked watching things like surgery, and I'll enjoy the rotations, but FP just fits me better.
12-03-2003, 07:57 AM
I'm in med school in Israel, and perceptions here about the specialties are different than in the US. Out here, docs in medicine are considered the "tops of the class". They have all the prestige and surgeons are looked upon as dimwitted mechanics.
The common joke is "where's the best place to hide money from a surgeon? - In a book."
FP fits into the "medicine" side, and is thus considered only slightly less important than IM.
Bottom line: Who cares what people think? Do what you like doing and ignore social thought trends that are irrelevant anyway.
Oh, disclaimer: I'm not speaking for EVERYONE out here, of course...it's just the general impression.
12-03-2003, 09:32 AM
hee hee hee! pretty good secretwave! its all different everywhere.
i was undecided between FP and EM. finally I thought that it would be nice to have my patients like and want to come see me.
now when people ask me what i want to do, i say family medicine and i cant figure out why you would pick something else.
and lastly dont forget from outside the tiny world of medicine (believe it or not, there is more out there) when people ask what you do and you say "i'm a doctor" they dont give a crapola what kind, they just say wow!
i am sure every subset of professions has their own prejudice...."oh you're a *chemical* engineer? **sniff** why arent you an electical engineer" see how stupid it sounds?