Jun 5, 2019
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Have you ever sat down and binge watched a season of Grey’s Anatomy or House M.D? Or even just watched an episode? Some are inspired by the dramatic and busy lives of doctors of these medical dramas, or maybe it's the magic behind curing the incurable- but either way, medical dramas can alter the perceptions of high school students looking to pursue medicine.

Medical dramas create unrealistic expectations of doctors. These shows fail to show the years of school, residency, and fellowship that are put behind a medical career. They fail to show paperwork and proper communication with patients and other doctors. They violate the hierarchy in hospitals and show conversations that are far from appropriate for a work environment, especially one as serious as medicine.

It is a shame that medical information is sacrificed in the face of entertainment. To keep the ratings up and bring the money in, shows will add more drama and less accurate information. This subtle failure to share accurate information with the public could have more devastating effects on our future careers than noticed.

As future doctors and health care professionals, it is our responsibility to recognize the inconsistent information being shared through medical dramas and put it in perspective for our futures. Education and awareness are necessary in creating an environment of medical truth and accuracy instead of skewed perceptions and overdramatized cases.

Please let me know your thoughts and how medical dramas have impacted your decision to pursue becoming a doctor!
 

Gilakend

Class of 2023
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Aug 24, 2012
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I don't think there's anything wrong with someone initially being inspired by these shows, I mean they're TV shows. If someone were to watch a TV show and want to be a doctor, there's no reason to pull them aside and crush their dreams with the harsh realities of medicine, especially if they're just a kid.


I don't think any medical students are under the impression that those shows demonstrate the lives of actual doctors. Shadowing and clinical experiences are essentially unwritten requirements for medical school admissions and should show even the most naive of people that TV isn't real life.

In my personal experience, I loved Scrubs and I liked House. I've watched them multiple times, I start medical school next month. However, I'm not under the impression either of those are real life, they're entertainment.
 
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Dr.Optic

2+ Year Member
Dec 21, 2015
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I did think about this as I was watching The Good Doctor. But I fully agree with Gilakend, they are just shows at the end of the day. I watch them because it fits my interests. It's nice to kick back and enjoy something at the end of a long work day. I always like some good drama without being involved in the drama. Eventually, reality will hit them one way or another. And what I mean by that is, as students progress further into their educational career, they will soon realize that science is hard and it's not for everyone. Not everyone has the work ethic it takes to become a healthcare provider. Its all about expectation vs reality in my eyes. Here is my two cents, "The goal is not to look rich, but be rich." Medicine looks glamorous on the outside, but those who make it have a true dedication for learning basic science.