History in CA of DOs to MDs, DO and MD association merger, etc.

Adapt

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There has been a discussion going on about changing the title of DOs to some other title in order to more closely resemble the title of MD. Here is a link that talks about the history of DOs in CA that is related to this discussion.

To summarize, in the 1960s, after much political upheaval, the California Osteopathic Association merged with the California Medical Association. This caused the College of Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons, which was a DO school in Irvine, to change to the UC Irvine school of medicine. Interestingly, it also allowed DOs to become MDs for the price of $65. The article goes on to describe the political struggles for DOs in CA and their eventual success. This just goes to show that a merger of the AOA and AMA is possible.

http://www.opsc.org/history.htm

"The Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons of California (OPSC) was created in 1962 from the ashes of a medical professional decimated by a remarkable sequence of political actions previously unimagined in California history. In 1960, California was home to over 2,600 D.O.s, 59 successful osteopathic hospitals and a respected college in Los Angeles. The California Osteopathic Association (COA) was the largest state osteopathic association in the nation.

By 1961, a combination of personal ambition, power plays, and political intrigue had undermined the state?s entire osteopathic medical structure. Proposition 22, climaxing a series of M.D.-D.O. merger negotiations, appeared before the California voters on November 6, 1962. By amending the Osteopathic Initiative Act of 1922, the referendum removed the Board of Osteopathic Examiners power to issue licenses to new applicants. It also terminated licensure by reciprocity, and would have closed down the BOE when the number of remaining D.O.s dwindled to 40.

Over 2,000 D.O.s chose or were forced to buy a M.D. degree for $65. The College of Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons (COPS) ? now the UC Irvine School of Medicine-was turned over to the M.D.s for one dollar. The 59 osteopathic hospitals disappeared.

Less than 500 physicians chose to retain the D.O. degree and since no new licenses could be granted, the profession in California was supposed to wither and die. Amid the smoke and ruins of the once proud profession, the stubborn streak in a few dedicated D.O.s prevailed. One night in a dimly lit underground Los Angeles Italian restaurant, a group of 35 D.O.s secretly met to form a new osteopathic organization. Although it may sound melodramatic today, the professional pressures were so great that the group dare not let it be known that there was organized opposition. Richard E. Eby, D.O. was appointed the president of the new organization and dispatched to the AOA House of Delegates in Miami, Florida to plead California?s cause. Within an hour of Dr. Eby?s presentation, the delegates voted to charter a new society in California ? OPSC.

In 1968, eight osteopathic medical students applied for California licenses before the Board of Medical Examiners and were refused. The eight then applied to the Board of Osteopathic Examiners and were refused because this board had no authority to issue new licenses. As a result, the eight students led by Dr. Ted D?Amico filed suit charging that Proposition 22 didn?t affect D.O.?s licensed prior to 1962 and wrongfully deprived newer D.O.s of the right to practice medicine in California. Six years later, on March 19, 1974, the California Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the provisions of Proposition 22 regarding merger and the inability of the BOE to issue licenses were unconstitutional.

By the end of 1974, 664 new licenses to practice osteopathic medicine in California had been granted. Since then, the osteopathic medical profession has steadily grown and developed throughout the state. In the past quarter century, OPSC has sponsored over 25 pieces of legislation to recognize and protect osteopathic physicians including state law making it illegal to discriminate against D.O.s in any professional or medical manner. OPSC has also prevented over 250 measures which would have seriously affected the way osteopathic physicians practice from becoming law.

Today, OPSC is a strong and important member of California?s health care provider system. Supported by over 1,500 members, OPSC provides a wide range of services and benefits for members and consumers."
 

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For anyone interested, the following is a link that contains the exact wording of proposition 22 which passed in CA in 1962. To find proposition 22 you need to scroll down a bit.

http://lalaw.lib.ca.us/ballot-1960.html

"22
Osteopaths.
Initiative act amendment

Continues Board of Osteopathic Examiners with power to enforce certain provisions of the Medical Practice Act as to osteopaths. Provides that qualified osteopaths who elect to designate themselves "M.D." will be subject to the jurisdiction of the Board of Medical Examiners. Grants Legislature power to amend the Osteopathic Initiative Act of 1922 and repeal that act and transfer functions to Board of Medical Examiners when there are 40 or less licensed osteopaths."
 

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I've also read recently where the W.H.O is expanding the realm of D.O.'s as well. It seems the WHO is beginning in the middle east and intends to expand the world wide rights to practice abroad with full medical rights to those osteopaths whom are educated in the U.S., their intention is to institute the full medical education of U.S. D.O.'s to other institutions abroad by incorporating our osteopathic medical scool plan of study. I believe Egypt, is the first to grant full medical licensure to D.O.'s who studied and completed all their requirements in the U..S. Most of the D.O. schools abroad only focus on the manipulation component of study and do not provide the full clinical study of current U.S. D.O. schools. This will eventually be a major benefit to those osteopaths who want to practice in other countries.

M. Samuel Bradley
PCSOM Class of 2008
 
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calidoc2004

I have a question about this.
If you graduate with a DO what is the process to declare yourself as MD?
Do people really do this? Is it exclusive to CA? Or other states?
Ive read back when this began there was some $65 fee you just pay and you get a new diploma?
Anyone who has done this let me know.
 

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calidoc2004 said:
I have a question about this.
If you graduate with a DO what is the process to declare yourself as MD?
Do people really do this? Is it exclusive to CA? Or other states?
Ive read back when this began there was some $65 fee you just pay and you get a new diploma?
Anyone who has done this let me know.
As in the article, the process of a DO changing to an MD only happened in CA during the 1960s for the $65 fee. Since then, it has not occured and DOs can no longer change to MDs.

I read on some thread awhile back that DOs can get an MD by doing this caribbean program while in DO school. Currently, this appears to be the only way to get an MD as a DO.

The link to this program is here:

http://www.uhsa.ag/pstudent/four/resdt/overview.htm
 
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calidoc2004

Im not sure if i agree with this.

Ive also read on the forums about people "declaring" themselves MD.
There was some residency thread i read where the people were using MD as a name but coming from osteopathic schools. So somewhere it must still be going on.
I read about that Carribean program. Seems like a scam really. When i see Stanford or Harvard offering similar programs ill have a look. From what i remember the Carribean one is a web-based program that is supposed to last 1 year.

Ill keep researching. You are probably right, i just saw those residents and got me thinking.
 

Adapt

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calidoc2004 said:
Im not sure if i agree with this.

Ive also read on the forums about people "declaring" themselves MD.
There was some residency thread i read where the people were using MD as a name but coming from osteopathic schools. So somewhere it must still be going on.
I read about that Carribean program. Seems like a scam really. When i see Stanford or Harvard offering similar programs ill have a look. From what i remember the Carribean one is a web-based program that is supposed to last 1 year.

Ill keep researching. You are probably right, i just saw those residents and got me thinking.
Sometimes if you look at websites for residency programs, they will list DOs as MDs. Generally, this is just a written error on their part. It is illegal to say you're an MD if you're a DO and if you know any DO that is doing that, they're doing it illegally.
 

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automaton said:
Why don't all osteopathic medical schools just become allopathic medical schools? (Or vice versa, but it's easier to switch to MD since it's universally recognized as "the" medical degree.) I don't see why there needs to be any distinction between DO and MD. Both do the same job, and I get the impression that OMT is not really used in practice. I had a DO PCP who dressed in a white coat, did a physical exam on me, and addressed himself as a doctor. I did not notice any difference except for the DO on his business card. Why is there still this distinction? I hear that osteopathic schools have a different philosophy, about holistic medicine, emphasis on primarcy care... I think those distinctions are outdated. There are many allopathic schools that focus on primary care, such as U of Washington, Oregon Health Sciences, etc. Almost all of the allopathic schools I've heard specifically about teach students to consider patients as a whole, in their social contexts, etc. To me there is no real distinction between the two schools and I don't see why they are distinct with two different degrees.

Wont happen, because the AACOM would lose control and they are not willing to give up control over their schools to the LCME/AMA.
 

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if you decide that you want to do DO then you should be able to put up with what comes with DO profession.

I am a DO.
I have friends who are DOs and they feel inadequate about being a DO.

When I was in school they were pushing for adding some MD like Title and I thought that looked so ridiculous.....

What I have seen is if you feel inadequate in any degree you are confused about the reason you are in that profession.

I am very proud to be a DO and I am very confident.

Some MDs have asked me many times, why I went DO since they see that I had all the credentials to attend an IVY League MD school.

These kind of questions came from people like director of ophthalmology programs who works with me and other CT surgeon. And I always tell them
I only applied to DO and I love what I do...

People who tried to use that MD DO difference is usually who feel pretty insecure about themselves.

When I was doing general surgery residency, I was rotating in a Level I trauma center pretty much run by MD residents. When I was on call with my senior PGY4 or 5...once they asked me hey Jacob do you know how to put a chest tube..and I used to scratch my head for a moment I did few...why do you want me to put it???? So they used to think I would do like a med student in placing some chest tubes. And in like good 5 minutes i would slam two chest tubes on both sides of chest to drain a hemothorax and I used love doing it really fast like in front of like 12 people all members of trauma team... Then I could see the satisfaction from my chiefs and attendings...And, instantly you earn your wings of respect....and I used to love speeding doing these procedures...teaching the medical student who were assisting me......

Then the chief was telling me..."Jacob when i am oncall for trauma you run the whole thing....only call me if you have some problems and he used to go to sleep."

On another time, me and my attending went to see a patient looks like her abdomen was very distended with some gray discoloration of flanks possible intraabdominal hemorrhage with hypotension...then the attending asking me to run a central line and me like a good slave I used to the central like in 3 minutes...and he looked very pleased to about my ability to do procedures....to resuscitate patients...

If you have time to worry about your Degree......
devote more of your precious time in reading and being a better physician.

I dont need to hide that I am a DO....
I work on a daily basis to improve my skills and my knowledge and let me say this if you are good there is no limits on what you can do.....you can help many patients.

be proud of who you are....
tired of those guys out there with small perspective in life...
 

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Adapt said:
Sometimes if you look at websites for residency programs, they will list DOs as MDs. Generally, this is just a written error on their part. It is illegal to say you're an MD if you're a DO and if you know any DO that is doing that, they're doing it illegally.

I wonder why it is illegal? I know of many MB's (Bachelor of Medicine) that come to the US and have MD on their lab coats and b-cards. Same goes for other health professions (e.g., dental). Perhaps it should be illegal if someone holds out that they graduated with a doctor of medicine (MD) degree, but what is wrong if you hold out that your are medical doctor (MD). The latter appears to be how the MB's, DM's, ChB., etc., are allowed to use MD - then why not the DO's?
 

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Why would anybody want to be an MD? :confused: Hopefully, if you do not feel like you could use OM for both diagnosis and therapy than either you aren't getting all you can out of your education or your school isn't providing enough opportunity for you to be comfortable using OMT in your practice (which I think is the case more often than not).
:) With as much money as people are throwing around for alternative medicine, the OMT option ought to be something that all DO's would be exited to have. I know I certainly look forward to using it in mine (provided that I keep my skills up through residency years [hopefully I can get a DO residency]).

"be proud of who you are...."--Vukken99
-ditto.
 
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If you don't know the differences between an MD and DO and why they should remain distinct, I think you should do a little thinking, discussion, and research on the subject.
 
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DrKrista said:
If you don't know the differences between an MD and DO and why they should remain distinct, I think you should do a little thinking, discussion, and research on the subject.

This has been an issue for a long time in the osteopathic profession. I am a DO, and completed an allopathic residency. I struggled in medical school with the dogmatic nature of OMT instruction, but hung in there for the medical education I knew would help my patients. Since Osteopaths decided to start practicing rational medicine, they have had to keep two value systems- an evidence-based scientific one pioneered by the allopaths, which is irreconcilable with the principle-driven osteopathic teachings, which are not modifiable by rational inquiry. I think the profession needs to decide where it stands. Personally, I think medicine as a whole is going the right direction in assessing the evidence base of all our practices. Those practices that can demonstrate efficacy will survive, and if OMT is one of them, I urge those adherents to demonstrate that. But if the osteopaths continue to try to cling to their cultist roots, we deserve to get left by the wayside.
 

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TPJ said:
I wonder why it is illegal? I know of many MB's (Bachelor of Medicine) that come to the US and have MD on their lab coats and b-cards. Same goes for other health professions (e.g., dental). Perhaps it should be illegal if someone holds out that they graduated with a doctor of medicine (MD) degree, but what is wrong if you hold out that your are medical doctor (MD). The latter appears to be how the MB's, DM's, ChB., etc., are allowed to use MD - then why not the DO's?
This is because the curriculum is the same. DO curriculum is different. The DO degree started as an American degree that was founded with a slightly different mission statement and philosophy. The philosophy between the british medical system degree of Bachelor of medicine and the Doctor of Medicine is the same. DO is not. Both MB and MD are both undergrad medical degrees with same philosophy.
 

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Dr.Millisevert said:
This is because the curriculum is the same. DO curriculum is different. The DO degree started as an American degree that was founded with a slightly different mission statement and philosophy. The philosophy between the british medical system degree of Bachelor of medicine and the Doctor of Medicine is the same. DO is not. Both MB and MD are both undergrad medical degrees with same philosophy.

dood! sweet! DOs are the AMERICAN way of doing medicine! started in AMERICA baby!! whoo whoo!! hehe :)
 

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fampractitioner said:
This has been an issue for a long time in the osteopathic profession. I am a DO, and completed an allopathic residency. I struggled in medical school with the dogmatic nature of OMT instruction, but hung in there for the medical education I knew would help my patients. Since Osteopaths decided to start practicing rational medicine, they have had to keep two value systems- an evidence-based scientific one pioneered by the allopaths, which is irreconcilable with the principle-driven osteopathic teachings, which are not modifiable by rational inquiry. I think the profession needs to decide where it stands. Personally, I think medicine as a whole is going the right direction in assessing the evidence base of all our practices. Those practices that can demonstrate efficacy will survive, and if OMT is one of them, I urge those adherents to demonstrate that. But if the osteopaths continue to try to cling to their cultist roots, we deserve to get left by the wayside.



What do you think of this?
http://www.quackwatch.org/04ConsumerEducation/QA/osteo.html
 

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fampractitioner said:
This has been an issue for a long time in the osteopathic profession. I am a DO, and completed an allopathic residency. I struggled in medical school with the dogmatic nature of OMT instruction, but hung in there for the medical education I knew would help my patients. Since Osteopaths decided to start practicing rational medicine, they have had to keep two value systems- an evidence-based scientific one pioneered by the allopaths, which is irreconcilable with the principle-driven osteopathic teachings, which are not modifiable by rational inquiry. I think the profession needs to decide where it stands. Personally, I think medicine as a whole is going the right direction in assessing the evidence base of all our practices. Those practices that can demonstrate efficacy will survive, and if OMT is one of them, I urge those adherents to demonstrate that. But if the osteopaths continue to try to cling to their cultist roots, we deserve to get left by the wayside.

Wonderfully said! At least in science, principles are just abstractions drawn from evidence that are handy for figuring out what direction to seek new evidence. When they go astray of reality, they've outlived their usefulness.

Personally, I think that there's a place for most osteopathic principles. I suspect, though, that some DO's, if faced with an option of having their MD counterparts embrace and practice every useful principle of osteopathy in exchange for a unification of the degrees, would be offended and horrified. Trying to maintain identity for identity's sake is classic teenager behavior. With any luck, osteopathy will continue to mature.
 

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DRek said:
Why would anybody want to be an MD? :confused: Hopefully, if you do not feel like you could use OM for both diagnosis and therapy than either you aren't getting all you can out of your education or your school isn't providing enough opportunity for you to be comfortable using OMT in your practice

Not really. Unless you're doing IM/FP/PM&R, OMT is pretty useless. Why would someone planning on going into Rads/Anesth/Path/Derm etc etc have any interest in it?
 

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Ok,
Cranial has been around for over 70 years. Don't you think someone would do the research and put away the skepticism already? Or maybe it was a technique that was devised at a time when people were to easily convinced of it's legitimacy, and has since failed to keep up with common medical knowledge, never to be proven through research, and should fade away with such quack techniques like blood letting, purging, vomiting.
Or prove me wrong.
 

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(nicedream) said:
Not really. Unless you're doing IM/FP/PM&R, OMT is pretty useless. Why would someone planning on going into Rads/Anesth/Path/Derm etc etc have any interest in it?

I agree with you as far as Radiology, Path and Derm don't really lend themselves to OMT. However Anesthesia on the other hand...I don't know how familiar you are with OMT in general but the whole idea isn't to make your muscles feel better the idea is to loosen up the diaphrams and increase both blood and lymphatic circulation. This can have great benefits for helping patients clear drugs that are left in their system. Also techniques to increase respiratory function can be very benefical. There is a lot of research out there now about treating surgical pts w/ OMT and the average length of hospital stays. Osteopathy is not the answer to all medical problems..not by a long shot but there are cases where drugs and surgery can't cure what's really wrong and for those instances I like to have OMT in my arsenal of medical tools
 

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In The DOs (which is absolutely required reading for anyone even thinking about osteopathy), Norman Gevitz gives an extremely good history of the California merger, including its place in the general history of osteopathy. It is EXCELLENT.
 
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TPJ said:
I wonder why it is illegal? I know of many MB's (Bachelor of Medicine) that come to the US and have MD on their lab coats and b-cards. Same goes for other health professions (e.g., dental). Perhaps it should be illegal if someone holds out that they graduated with a doctor of medicine (MD) degree, but what is wrong if you hold out that your are medical doctor (MD). The latter appears to be how the MB's, DM's, ChB., etc., are allowed to use MD - then why not the DO's?



In NY i know lots of DO's that sign MD or have MD on their lab coats. In NY if u choose to get MD licence plates you get MD plates wether you are a DO or MD. Its the same license given by the state........John Doe......Physician & Surgeon ...is what it say's on your little license paper issued bu the education department of the state of NY, and it does NOT state wether you have an MD or DO. Really i dont see what the big deal is. Its just they degree. You both have the same EXACT license, and do the same EXACt thing. I would not see it as misleading to a patient because of this reason
just my 2 cents
 

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currently, can you still change your DO into MD? if yes, what university would issue the degree?
 

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Not sure if it still is going on, but there was one Carribean school that would do this as of last year........a pretty rediculous and absolutely unnecessary process....
 

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fampractitioner said:
This has been an issue for a long time in the osteopathic profession. I am a DO, and completed an allopathic residency. I struggled in medical school with the dogmatic nature of OMT instruction, but hung in there for the medical education I knew would help my patients. Since Osteopaths decided to start practicing rational medicine, they have had to keep two value systems- an evidence-based scientific one pioneered by the allopaths, which is irreconcilable with the principle-driven osteopathic teachings, which are not modifiable by rational inquiry. I think the profession needs to decide where it stands. Personally, I think medicine as a whole is going the right direction in assessing the evidence base of all our practices. Those practices that can demonstrate efficacy will survive, and if OMT is one of them, I urge those adherents to demonstrate that. But if the osteopaths continue to try to cling to their cultist roots, we deserve to get left by the wayside.

As a DO student, I think this is one of the most sensible statements I've read on this forum. It deserves another look.
 

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Some interesting quotes from New Engl J Med article:

Those who claim that osteopathy remains a unique system usually base their argument on two tenets. One is the holistic or patient-centered approach, with a focus on preventive care, that they say characterizes osteopathy. That claim to uniqueness is hard to defend in the light of the increasing interest paid to this approach within general internal medicine and other areas of allopathic medicine. The other, potentially more robust, claim to uniqueness is the use of osteopathic manipulation as part of the overall therapeu-tic approach. In osteopathic manipulation, the bones, muscles, and tendons are manipulated to promote blood flow through tissues and thus enhance the body's own healing powers. The technique, based on the idea of a myofascial continuity that links every part of the body with every other part, involves the "skillful and dexterous use of the hands" to treat what was once called the osteopathic lesion but is now referred to as somatic dysfunction. Osteopathic manipulation is not well known (or practiced) by allopathic physicians, but for decades it has stood as the core therapeutic method of osteopathic medicine.
&

Some claim that osteopathic physicians are more parsimonious in their use of medical technology. Thus, they can provide more cost-effective medical care and reduce the need for medications, which, although effective, can have serious side effects. The specific mechanism that would account for any improvement in back pain directly related to osteopathic manipulation is unclear, but the most important studies will be those that test whether the technique works in clinical practice. Part of the success of osteopathic manipulation for patients with back pain may come from the fact that physicians who use osteopathic manipulation touch their patients.

I also like this one:

The osteopathic physicians who are more committed to osteopathic manipulation tend to be more likely than their colleagues to have a fundamentalist religious orientation.

That's pretty funny. But I still have a soft spot in my heart for OMT. There's something about touching your patients and trying to offer them some relief using only your hands that is cool. At least to me.

The religous part is definetly not true at California school. Perhaps elsewhere.
 

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The plain truth is that in the US and pretty much around the world MD is synonymous with physician. I agree wholeheartedly with the NEJM article from 1999 on just about every statement. One, the distinction between MD and DO has blurred to the point of being invisible save fore the addition of OMT which is employed only in very specific circumstances by most DOs. Second, as in the last statement in the article, I have also wondered why, if DOs feel OMT is so vital and beneficial to medical practice, do they not try and integrate it into all of medical training. It seems like we are trying to be distinct above actually trying to help as many people as possible. The parts of OMT that have research to show their efficacy should be offered as at least an elective to allopathic students, and ultimately the two professions should merge to one that simply offers the best medical care possible. Ultimately the confusion for patients and practitioners, and especially DO students who must navigate both the Comlex/AOA world, but also the USMLE/ACGME world, will subside under one recocognizable roof, MD.
 

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I'm in the process of applying to both allopathic and osteopathic med schools and just spoke with a physiatrist DO today asking about shadowing opportunity. The physician took me because she took both the COMLE and USMLE, she obtained both a DO and a MD. She considered herself to be a MD, not a good model for understanding DO medicine.

She graduated from an osteopathic school in 1969, after the 1964 law, and not from California state. Maybe taking USMLE is all we need to get both degrees. Need to talk to someone from ACGME to be sure though.
 

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I'm in the process of applying to both allopathic and osteopathic med schools and just spoke with a physiatrist DO today asking about shadowing opportunity. The physician took me because she took both the COMLE and USMLE, she obtained both a DO and a MD. She considered herself to be a MD, not a good model for understanding DO medicine.

She graduated from an osteopathic school in 1969, after the 1964 law, and not from California state. Maybe taking USMLE is all we need to get both degrees. Need to talk to someone from ACGME to be sure though.

No damnit, the degree you earn is NOT based on the licensing exam you take (USMLE or COMLEX). IT IS BASED ON THE SCHOOL YOU GO TO. You can score perfects on all 3 steps of the USMLE if you want, go to an ACGME residency, sit for MD board specialties, and you still will not get an MD.

The -ONLY- way to get both degrees is to either go to both schools, or to have been a DO in 1962 in california when you could pay $65 and take a couple classes, but even then it wasn't the same (because the law was written poorly).

You don't need to talk to anyone from ACGME, AOA, AACOMAS, AMCAS, FBI, CIA, NAMBLA, or otherwise. This is just how it works, its not complicated.


PS - sorry for the tone, but people constantly bring this up and its getting old.
 

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No damnit, the degree you earn is NOT based on the licensing exam you take (USMLE or COMLEX). IT IS BASED ON THE SCHOOL YOU GO TO. You can score perfects on all 3 steps of the USMLE if you want, go to an ACGME residency, sit for MD board specialties, and you still will not get an MD.

The -ONLY- way to get both degrees is to either go to both schools, or to have been a DO in 1962 in california when you could pay $65 and take a couple classes, but even then it wasn't the same (because the law was written poorly).

You don't need to talk to anyone from ACGME, AOA, AACOMAS, AMCAS, FBI, CIA, NAMBLA, or otherwise. This is just how it works, its not complicated.


PS - sorry for the tone, but people constantly bring this up and its getting old.

Hmm, don't be so quick to assume: I think Med108 should definitely contact NAMBLA. The codeword for "DO --> MD," is "little boys," just so they know.
 

rickyrincon

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Feb 21, 2009
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I am new to this board and have read some very interesting posts.
I have a lot to think about as I am just starting my education in hopes to become an MD.
Thank you,
R. Rincon
California Vacations
 
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