dulop

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how to answer this interview question: What do you think about abortion?
or When is it okay to perform an abortion?

whats the smart way to answer these controversial question? THANKS!!
 

Turkeyman

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Yeah, totally depends. If you're not sure how to go about any issue, just take the middle road --> a little bit of this, a little bit of that hahaha. Unfortunately, coveying your true beliefs in interviews can, at times, ruin your chances entirely. Take the middle road...I says....says...not say...says...gobble gobble
 
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riceman04

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learnmed said:
Depends where you're having the interview.

That is very very very true.
I hate to say this, but for that question you might want to answer based on whether or not you are interviewing at a Conservative or Liberal med school.
 

Overeducated

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Honestly, how many people get asked that confrontational a question? I've never been asked that in any of my interviews, including several schools with religious affiliations.
 

baby4you

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Overeducated said:
Honestly, how many people get asked that confrontational a question? I've never been asked that in any of my interviews, including several schools with religious affiliations.
i did, in more that one school, probably three.
 

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Questions like that aren't really fair because they are so emotionally charged, but if I was ever asked (and I have been) what I would do if one of my patients wanted an abortion, I would just explain that I am undecided on that topic and that if a patient of mine ever wanted a procedure I was morally against, I would refer to them to another physician who could help them out. Maybe it sounds wishy-washy, but it's better than preaching your values to the patient and leaving them high and dry. This appeared to satisfy my pre-med committee interviewer, because I am now about to graduate from medical school.
 

Southpawz

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I agree, I don't think that's a question they would ask you during an interview. If it was on your ethics exam I would understand though.
 

ahumdinger

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Unless you are interviewing at an uber conservative med school, I say you should take a strong stance either way. I don't like trying the middle of the road answer because it can turn out wishy-washy and you may sound like you haven't really thought it out. Take a stance, and strongly support it, and then at the very end, you can acknowledge the difficulty of the topic and point out a few strong points on the other side that you've considered. That way, it's not exactly a sitting on the fence response, but you're not being too extreme either. In all ethical questions, you must be sure to keep in mind key principles, like patient-autonomy and "first do no harm."
 

tulane06

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You won't get asked that question, but if you do, you should say "If a certain procedure makes me uncomfortable, I would promptly refer the patient to someone highly trained and competent in this procedure" or something to that extent.
 

potato51

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Depends on the interviewer actually. MDs tend to be conservative, PhDs possibly liberal (one of my PhD interviewers was a very open minded conservative).

I say state how you feel as long as you do it thoughtfully and show you've given both sides consideration.
 

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Personally unless there is a medical reason for the abortion (anencephalia, Downs Syndrome, or some other non-treatable birth defect associated with dismal outcomes) or other supportable reason (rape, incest, or danger to the health or life of the mother), I would refer someone out to another physician. I have a problem with abortion as a form of birth control, but I do believe it has its place in a few select cases.

But then again this is a pointless issue when it comes to me because I have no plans to be an OB/GYN (in fact I think I would choose seppuku over that), so I would never be put in a situation where I would be even presented with a need to perform an abortion.
 

LizzyM

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Unless you've committed to OB/GYN in your personal statement, you could wiggle out with something along the lines of it being a serious ethical, moral, political, emotional issue but one that you have not considered from the viewpoint of a physician because you do not intend to practice within a specialty that has abortion within its scope of practice. Then, to show that you aren't going to completely wuss out, you say, "however, I have given significant thought to the issue of physician assisted suicide and I believe that I would...."

Of course, if you think that your future lies in radiology, derm, pathology, or occupational medicine (to name a few) physician assisted suicide is a moot point and you'd have to come up with some other hot button issue like care for the uninsured.
 
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SMRT

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But then again this is a pointless issue when it comes to me because I have no plans to be an OB/GYN
Unless you've committed to OB/GYN in your personal statement, you could wiggle out
I have to disagree here. Abortion issues do not arise solely within OBGYN. How about family medicine, or possibly ER and internal medicine? You might not be performing abortions, but chances are you will have a patient who is facing an unplanned pregnancy. You might be able to wriggle out of the issue in an interview, but you certainly won't be able to when a patient is sitting in front of you.
 

DropkickMurphy

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FP and IM are too boring for me to consider them as a specialty, so it is a moot point.

And yes, you can wriggle out of when dealing with a patient. Refer them out. :thumbup: Happens all the time.
 

jebus

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Praetorian said:
FP and IM are too boring for me to consider them as a specialty, so it is a moot point.

And yes, you can wriggle out of when dealing with a patient. Refer them out. :thumbup: Happens all the time.
What's the story with your avatar? It's just piqued my interest, that's all.
 

DropkickMurphy

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No story really....I just found it on a online journal website that my fiancee is a member of.
 

jebus

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Well, despite your story I still think it's pretty cool.
 

lazygunner

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dulop said:
how to answer this interview question: What do you think about abortion?
or When is it okay to perform an abortion?

whats the smart way to answer these controversial question? THANKS!!
You could always go with the Roe v. Wade answer...ok to perform an abortion until viability, which is around the end of the second trimester (assuming you are pro choice). That way you can support your point of view without putting your license at risk.
 

Flopotomist

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You are likely not going to be asked this specific question. You may however be asked a similarly controversial question. My advice would be to demonstrate an understanding of both sides of the issue, and then be honest with the interviewer about your position. Be prepared to defend your position. I think that agreeing with the interviewer's position is not as important as demonstrating an ability to explore both sides of an issue, and the ability to defend your judgement.
 

Hurricane95

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Answer truthfully...it shouldnt matter what your viewpoint is, just support it well. If you are pro-choice, say so. Pro-life, say so. The interview is ALL about how you support your ideas and articulate your thoughts.

I'm Catholic and pro-life...when asked this question, I did not lie to please my interviewer. I simply said, well I won't perform the abortion for the trivial reason of birth control...but I will certainly refer my patient to a competent colleague who can help her. Period. I am advocating for my patient by making sure she gets help somewhere.
 

EctopicFetus

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Please see my name.. sometimes it is necessary..

Ectopic..
 

C.P. Jones

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Praetorian said:
No story really....I just found it on a online journal website that my fiancee is a member of.
how about for a story: you are breeding a mantis army to take over the world

and as a sidenote: the mantis is CT's state insect....(you can use CT as a starting point to take over the world since we would probably easily succumb to the demands of the mantis)
 

ivan lewis

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Important thing to remember when answering these questions is to always put the patient's best interest at heart. If you're opposed to abortion (as I am) it's okay to say that but to deny the patient an abortion may not be in the patient's best interest. I think it's best to clearly state that 1) you want to do what's in the patient's best interest, 2) that you're personally opposed to abortion (if you are), 3) thus, you will refer the patient to a physician who can counsel the patient in a non-biased manner and may/will perform the service for her. It's important to state that you will personally find an alternate provider, to indicate that you will not abandon your patient b/c she doesn't share your beliefs.
 

DropkickMurphy

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Interesting about the whole state insect thing.....

A mantis army leading to world domination......MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! :smuggrin:
 

velo

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Praetorian said:
No story really....I just found it on a online journal website that my fiancee is a member of.

you know, female praying mantises eat their mate after they mate.
 

DropkickMurphy

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Actually I remember one of my professors saying that that is not always correct.
 

christinejane19

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dulop said:
how to answer this interview question: What do you think about abortion?
or When is it okay to perform an abortion?

whats the smart way to answer these controversial question? THANKS!!

i would go ahead a voice my opinion. after all, thats what they asked for!...i would state assertively that i am pro-life/pro-choice for whatever reason, however, i respect and support others in thier beliefs... i would make it clear that if i had a patient w/ an unwanted pregnancy inquire about abortion, i would certainly provide her with unbiased, factual information and support her in receiving quality patient education...i would answer medical questions that may help her make the best decision for herself at that point in her life, regardless of my beliefs
 
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