cdcd67

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Hello. I am sophomore in NYIT (BS/DO program)..so at one point in my life, I was so sure I wanted to be a doctor (I LOVE medicine), but now I am beginning to have doubts as to my ability to be able to deal with all the stress that doctors go through...not to mention the numerous loans that need to be paid off...and also, how I will not have any life. Not to mention, I don't know if the medical profession will be such a stable field in the future (you can check the article I posted). Even doctors I have shadowed have told me to switch to a different field.

I had a talk with my aunt today who told to consider pharmacy (she is a pharmacist herself) and while their seem to many benefits of doing pharmacy, I just can't imagine changing fields just because one is quicker and less stressful...I'm so confused...I know many of you will say, why not just shadow a pharmacist and find out??...Well actually, I was thinking of transferring out of NYIT (you can read my previous posts for that), so there is not much time to shadow...because I will also need to fill out applications.

I have never done anything related to pharmacy...I did check out the different types of pharmacists, and I know I don't want to be a retail pharmacist. I was thinking between an industrial and clinical pharmacist.

Can someone please provide me some words of advice? I would really appreciate any help. Thank you.
 

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Mystery Man
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You are going to be a doctor. You earned a spot there. Just because you have a few doubts don't give up. I bet you spent a large part of your life dreaming of being a doctor. There are countless options in medicine, as well as lifestyle friendly specialties. Look into it all before you jump ship.
 

YiYaoYue

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I blame it on the economy. I think there are people moving out of the US with the current situation (maybe going to Canada or Mexico). The stability might be shaky now, but the outlook should still remain in demand. Pharmacists are not in a clear shortage, so I wouldn't jump ship just because of that one issue. Do what you would like to do and you will be happier. It is already difficult to pay off loans as a pharmacists... it will be even more difficult if you add 2 years of DO loans on top of that. DO's may have less free time, but they do make more money so it is a trade off.
 

Storm90

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I knew after my first year that an MD wasn't for me. Not to mention I like sleep and those 24-48 hour ER shifts at a hospital would kill me. However after my 1st year I started working in a pharmacy and I knew right away that this was the right fit for me. Many pharmacists have told me the work isn't worth the effort, but everyone will tell you that. Do what you want to do. I'm sure you'd make a fine physician.
 

FresnoPharmD

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Many pharmacists have told me the work isn't worth the effort, but everyone will tell you that.
I hear this from a lot of pharmacists who didn't seem to get into it for the right reasons...or any reason at all. They'll say something like they just wanted a stable career...or someone suggested for them to sign up for pharmacy school (that's basically what it was back then...application process wasn't much of anything)...or maybe their parents were pharmacists and they were expected to keep it going.

I think if you get firsthand experience or you do your homework and try to picture yourself being a certain type of pharmacist, and you like that image...then anything is worth the effort, and you will love the end result.
 

PharMed2016

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Hello. I am sophomore in NYIT (BS/DO program)..so at one point in my life, I was so sure I wanted to be a doctor (I LOVE medicine), but now I am beginning to have doubts as to my ability to be able to deal with all the stress that doctors go through...not to mention the numerous loans that need to be paid off...and also, how I will not have any life. Not to mention, I don't know if the medical profession will be such a stable field in the future (you can check the article I posted). Even doctors I have shadowed have told me to switch to a different field.

I had a talk with my aunt today who told to consider pharmacy (she is a pharmacist herself) and while their seem to many benefits of doing pharmacy, I just can't imagine changing fields just because one is quicker and less stressful...I'm so confused...I know many of you will say, why not just shadow a pharmacist and find out??...Well actually, I was thinking of transferring out of NYIT (you can read my previous posts for that), so there is not much time to shadow...because I will also need to fill out applications.

I have never done anything related to pharmacy...I did check out the different types of pharmacists, and I know I don't want to be a retail pharmacist. I was thinking between an industrial and clinical pharmacist.

Can someone please provide me some words of advice? I would really appreciate any help. Thank you.
It's ok to have doubts about what your going to do, its only human nature. Honestly, I myself have had doubts about what I have chosen to do in life. I think the old analogy applies "the grass is always greener on the other side." Whether it is really... well thats your decision.

As for whether it would be less expensive for pharmacy, thats up for debate. Pharmacy school is actually around the price of alot of medical schools (MD/DO) included. You don't need a 4-year degree but the trend is heading towards there. So in terms of general education cost... your looking about the same or a little less. However, in the long run in terms of earning potential at the base level (w/o specialization)... a doctor makes considerably more. This is balanced by 60+ hour weeks as compared to pharmacist 40 hour weeks. If you are a pharmacist that owns your own pharmacy... obviously you stand to make just as much as some doctors on the upper end...

I would suggest that you shadow a pharmacist and see what its like. The life of a doctor is certainly more exciting I can tell you right now. Also, as to the stability of pharmacy... there is a demand at the moment but that demand will die down as more pharmacist are graduated from the ever increasing amounts of pharmacy schools. Luckily a PharmD is a versatile degree with positions in industry, academia, and hospital.

Although, it is not advocated... you could always get a pharmD then your DO. I know a few doctors with their PharmDs.
 
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cdcd67

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Oh..so you mean, like get a PharmD degree just in case I don't get into any medical school? (like a backup)
 

SHC1984

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The only field worth going into if you are going into medicine is cosmetic surgery. The money is excellent and you don't have to be on call and deal with insurance as most cosmetic surgeries are NOT covered by insurance...however I am sure that field is EXTREMELY competitve to get into...so if you end up not getting into that field then your life will be a living hell.
Just like dental students...if they don't get into ortho residencies their lives will SUCK after that point...

The huge advantage of pharmacy over medicine and dental is that you don't have to fight with your classmates to be number 1 in your class...In medical school you have to be the top in your class to get into cosmetic surgery...in pharmacy you do not have to worry about stuff like that...

ps. did I mention pharmacists don't need to touch any patients? (it doesn't get any better then that...:D)
 
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cdcd67

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Lol..okay so I was thinking of applying for pharmacy school for Fall 2009 and in the meantime, I could shadow some pharmacists. If I don't like what I am seeing, I can continue doing medicine. I tried looking for schools that accept Spring 2009 transfers, but there aren't any, so...

O by the way, does anyone know how I can shadow an industrial pharmacist?
 

SHC1984

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Lol..okay so I was thinking of applying for pharmacy school for Fall 2009 and in the meantime, I could shadow some pharmacists. If I don't like what I am seeing, I can continue doing medicine. I tried looking for schools that accept Spring 2009 transfers, but there aren't any, so...

O by the way, does anyone know how I can shadow an industrial pharmacist?
My situation is very similar to yours...I recently just decided to apply for pharm school...I am going to take the PCAT on Jan 24th...HOWEVER most pharm schools require people to take the PCAT before Jan (the latest date is Oct I believe...) Some pharm schools (UNC, Campbell and Wingate for ex) say that if you take the PCAT on Jan you will be applying for a wait list spot!!! So what I am saying is that unless you have already apply for pharm school and have taken the PCAT...it might be TOO LATE to apply for Fall 2009...
I think if you want pharm school you might have to wait until June 2009 to apply for Fall 2010...which sucks b/c I was hoping to get in for Fall 2009 as well...

Not sure if you can shadow an industrial pharmacist...but you can get a job as a pharm tech and see if you like it...I work at walgreens right now as a pharm tech...Okay, I know working in retail offers absolutely NO prestige at all...(thats the reason why I didn't do this before...I was in dental school b/c I thought being a pharmacist= no prestige...but now I don't give a **** about prestige..LOL..) And so far the job isn't that bad...dealing with insurance sucks, but other then that I love my job! I hope this helps! :)
 
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cdcd67

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OMG! that sucks! Thanks for telling me about that; Fall 2010 is so late..I was going to study for the MCAT this summer and see if I can get into any medical schools, which can take some time, so Fall 2010 wouldn't work for me either.

Damn!
 

Storm90

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I hear this from a lot of pharmacists who didn't seem to get into it for the right reasons...or any reason at all. They'll say something like they just wanted a stable career...or someone suggested for them to sign up for pharmacy school (that's basically what it was back then...application process wasn't much of anything)...or maybe their parents were pharmacists and they were expected to keep it going.

I think if you get firsthand experience or you do your homework and try to picture yourself being a certain type of pharmacist, and you like that image...then anything is worth the effort, and you will love the end result.
Exactly! Well said. :)
 

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The only field worth going into if you are going into medicine is cosmetic surgery. The money is excellent and you don't have to be on call and deal with insurance as most cosmetic surgeries are NOT covered by insurance...however I am sure that field is EXTREMELY competitve to get into...so if you end up not getting into that field then your life will be a living hell.
Just like dental students...if they don't get into ortho residencies their lives will SUCK after that point...

The huge advantage of pharmacy over medicine and dental is that you don't have to fight with your classmates to be number 1 in your class...In medical school you have to be the top in your class to get into cosmetic surgery...in pharmacy you do not have to worry about stuff like that...

ps. did I mention pharmacists don't need to touch any patients? (it doesn't get any better then that...:D)
Biased a little? Surgey is horrible to get into. You will do 100+ hour residency. As for life style, any field can be life style friendly. It just depends on how much money, or lack of, your willing to deal with. Family practice can make your own hours; you want to work until 3 everyday, thats fine just expect the money to take a hit. ER is shift work usually 4 10s or 3 12s; when your off your off. Surgery, you could choose to work at a surgery center with set hours. Every field is becomeing more lifestyle friendly; many new doctors are not willing to work the 60+ the doctors of old did. Just throwing that out there. Do what makes you happy. Not what job requires the least amount of work.

60 hours at a job you love > 40 hour job you hate.
 

YiYaoYue

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Biased a little? Surgey is horrible to get into. You will do 100+ hour residency. As for life style, any field can be life style friendly. It just depends on how much money, or lack of, your willing to deal with. Family practice can make your own hours; you want to work until 3 everyday, thats fine just expect the money to take a hit. ER is shift work usually 4 10s or 3 12s; when your off your off. Surgery, you could choose to work at a surgery center with set hours. Every field is becomeing more lifestyle friendly; many new doctors are not willing to work the 60+ the doctors of old did. Just throwing that out there. Do what makes you happy. Not what job requires the least amount of work.

60 hours at a job you love > 40 hour job you hate.
but 100-90 bucks an hour for 60 hours makes it much more equal to 60 bucks for 40 hour job for people who find lots of joy in money. I think pharmacists make enough to more than satisfy my needs, but that isn't the case with everyone (especially if significant other makes nothing)
 

SHC1984

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OMG! that sucks! Thanks for telling me about that; Fall 2010 is so late..I was going to study for the MCAT this summer and see if I can get into any medical schools, which can take some time, so Fall 2010 wouldn't work for me either.

Damn!
Well, you can still apply this year if you can get all your LOR (one has to be from a pharmacist) and PS ready...Plus have time to study for the PCAT on Jan 24th....You will most likely end up on the waiting list, but you can still GET OFF of that. :D Just make sure you pick schools with Feb and March deadlines...UNC/UCSF for example have Nov deadlines so we both miss those schools! :(
 

SHC1984

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Biased a little? Surgey is horrible to get into. You will do 100+ hour residency. As for life style, any field can be life style friendly. It just depends on how much money, or lack of, your willing to deal with. Family practice can make your own hours; you want to work until 3 everyday, thats fine just expect the money to take a hit. ER is shift work usually 4 10s or 3 12s; when your off your off. Surgery, you could choose to work at a surgery center with set hours. Every field is becomeing more lifestyle friendly; many new doctors are not willing to work the 60+ the doctors of old did. Just throwing that out there. Do what makes you happy. Not what job requires the least amount of work.

60 hours at a job you love > 40 hour job you hate.
I mean if one is to go into medicine or dental then its to their best interest to pick a field that is cosmetic related to avoid dealing with insurance. Thats THE MAIN reason COSMETIC surgerons have it it all b/c insurance don't cover their fees...they get cash for every procedure. If you are a family physican or general dentist...not only will you be dealing with insurance, but the procedures you are doing won't be as clean (compare to say an Orthodontist) and you make less money...doesn't sound like a good idea to me...LOL..

But you are right you should do what you like the most. :)