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Medical path England versus US?

Which is better, the US med programs (including undergrad) or England Med Programs?

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lola523

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Hi I'm currently a high school junior in CT, US. I'm a little wary on completing a bachelors degree and med school in 8 years because I would have to finance that all by myself and I really want to consider all my options.
From what I've read and heard so far is that in England, after high school, people just start their med school and is, I think , 5 years long. I would not come back to the US though because spots are competitive. I'm also wary of moving my life to England all by myself and never coming back to the US, but, if it means I have a better chance succeeding there, then I think I could do it.
I'm not Ivy league material, but I'm a pretty good student ( 97% weighted GPA, taking all AP classes, 1880 on SAT's, 800 on SAT II Bio, 4 in AP Comp Sci and Bio). I was wondering what schools and programs should I look into in England, or it it's even worth it. Is the material learned in US better? For US, I'm thinking about majoring in comp sci as a backup in case I don't get into med school.
 
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ndafife

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"I have no plans to take the USMLE ever"

Then you have no plans to be a doctor in the US ever
 
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lola523

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"I have no plans to take the USMLE ever"

Then you have no plans to be a doctor in the US ever
Wow I didn't know I would have to take them even if I wasn't an international student...that sucks but to rephrase, I wouldn't want to take the USMLE as an international student and fight for those competetive residency seats. So if I plan to study in England, should I just stay there?
 

ndafife

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If you want to practice in the US. Go to school in the US. If you want to practice in the UK, go to school there.
 

BigRedBeta

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The systems are different in so many ways that it's hard to compare them directly, and since they have the same outcome - you're a doctor - on the backend (albeit in different a different medical system) it's even more difficult. So you have to look at the circumstances and where you see yourself in your adult life.

As the others have pointed out, the biggest decision point is where do you want to live in your future. As you've alluded to, entering the US post-graduate training system is an uphill battle when coming from abroad. If that path deters you (ie, the prospect of taking the time to do so and the possibility of failing to match in the US), then yes, by going to the UK for medical school, you'll be there for the rest of your career. If it doesn't, then you have more options, but your British medical degree will make the UK your default location.

Now if that's ok in your book, I hope you've done the research to determine that going to the UK actually is more cost-effective. I'm far enough removed from undergraduate admissions/scholarships to not know how well your stats match up, but they seem like you could do well enough to find low-cost options here in the US. Unless you have a rich uncle, medical school here requires loans, that's just a fact. Many of us financed medical school by ourselves. Yes, I'm 31 and ~250k in debt and just starting my first "real" job after 6 years in training while my loans sat in forbearance accruing interest. But keep in mind that physicians in the UK do not make as much money as those in the US. Look at this article from 2011 in an uproar about the salaries of a few GP's in the UK. What's most telling is that about 1000 physicians in the entirety of the UK made > 200k pounds...which is about 300k USD.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2057818/The-family-doctor-earns-750-000-year.html

The point is that the economics are different over there and it's more nuanced than to just say, well 4 years of undergrad and 4 years of med school costs more than 5 or 6 years in the UK.
 

Winged Scapula

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Hi I'm currently a high school junior in CT, US. I'm a little wary on completing a bachelors degree and med school in 8 years because I would have to finance that all by myself and I really want to consider all my options.
From what I've read and heard so far is that in England, after high school, people just start their med school and is, I think , 5 years long. I would not come back to the US though because spots are competitive. I'm also wary of moving my life to England all by myself and never coming back to the US, but, if it means I have a better chance succeeding there, then I think I could do it.
I'm not Ivy league material, but I'm a pretty good student ( 97% weighted GPA, taking all AP classes, 1880 on SAT's, 800 on SAT II Bio, 4 in AP Comp Sci and Bio). I was wondering what schools and programs should I look into in England, or it it's even worth it. Is the material learned in US better? For US, I'm thinking about majoring in comp sci as a backup in case I don't get into med school.

Wow I didn't know I would have to take them even if I wasn't an international student...that sucks but to rephrase, I wouldn't want to take the USMLE as an international student and fight for those competetive residency seats. So if I plan to study in England, should I just stay there?

The process is a little more complicated than perhaps you've presented.

First, there is no doubt that attending medical school in the US is expensive especially if you've already got debt from undergraduate school. However, there are many, many students that do it, financed completely by loans, scholarships, part time jobs and help from family/spouses; there would be no reason to believe you couldn't do the same.

If you wish to work in the US, it is much much much easier to do so having trained here. While you may believe you don't want to work/live in the US, things change; live changes. Its awfully hard living in another country especially when you want/need to get home quickly, when your family or friends need you. What will happen when your parents or siblings age and might need you close by?

Anyone wishing to work in the US as a physician, regardless of where they trained, must take the USMLEs (or the corresponding osteopathic examinations called the COMLEX). These are medical licensing examinations, required to obtain a medical license. So yes, US medical students must take them as must international medical grads who wish to work in the US in positions requiring a medical license.

The biggest question however, is what makes you think that the UK would be happy to have you AND (more importantly), allow you to stay after graduation, as a non-citizen, taking up one of their valuable training positions? Clearly, that is possible as the NHS has many overseas trained physicians but its not as simple as packing your rucksack and moving to the country of your choice, go to school and get a job. In fact, the US has the most open "borders" when it comes to allowing foreign trained physicians to work in their country. In most other places, if you are not a citizen, you get in line behind the citizens trained there, for a post graduate training position and then job.
 
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grapp

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The process is a little more complicated than perhaps you've presented.

First, there is no doubt that attending medical school in the US is expensive especially if you've already got debt from undergraduate school. However, there are many, many students that do it, financed completely by loans, scholarships, part time jobs and help from family/spouses; there would be no reason to believe you couldn't do the same.

If you wish to work in the US, it is much much much easier to do so having trained here. While you may believe you don't want to work/live in the US, things change; live changes. Its awfully hard living in another country especially when you want/need to get home quickly, when your family or friends need you. What will happen when your parents or siblings age and might need you close by?

Anyone wishing to work in the US as a physician, regardless of where they trained, must take the USMLEs (or the corresponding osteopathic examinations called the COMLEX). These are medical licensing examinations, required to obtain a medical license. So yes, US medical students must take them as must international medical grads who wish to work in the US in positions requiring a medical license.

The biggest question however, is what makes you think that the UK would be happy to have you AND (more importantly), allow you to stay after graduation, as a non-citizen, taking up one of their valuable training positions? Clearly, that is possible as the NHS has many overseas trained physicians but its not as simple as packing your rucksack and moving to the country of your choice, go to school and get a job. In fact, the US has the most open "borders" when it comes to allowing foreign trained physicians to work in their country. In most other places, if you are not a citizen, you get in line behind the citizens trained there, for a post graduate training position and then job.
Dang.... You covered a lot. Well put!
 
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