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Hi Everyone, I am currently in school for Respiratory Therapy. I want to go to Medical School, but I thought I would gain some experience working with patients before I applied. I already have a BS in Mechanical Engineering so I just need a few more classes to cover my prereqs to apply to Med School.

My question is, am I wasting my time with RT school? Is working in an allied health field going to be beneficial to my chances of getting into a good Medical School or should I just drop RT school and start finishing up my prereqs for Med School?

Thanks!
 

tupac_don

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Celene said:
Hi Everyone, I am currently in school for Respiratory Therapy. I want to go to Medical School, but I thought I would gain some experience working with patients before I applied. I already have a BS in Mechanical Engineering so I just need a few more classes to cover my prereqs to apply to Med School.

My question is, am I wasting my time with RT school? Is working in an allied health field going to be beneficial to my chances of getting into a good Medical School or should I just drop RT school and start finishing up my prereqs for Med School?

Thanks!
Yes and no. If you are set on medical school, don't bother with RT. If you are close to finishing RT say another 6monts to 9 mos, I would say go ahead and get RT degree. B/c you have a job with decent money. As far as that helping you clinicially, it wont' help that much. Also if your grades in RT drop, that will hurt you for your medical school. Bottom line do it if you are close to being done. If not, jump ship and go do your pre-reqs and go to med school.
 

U4iA

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if you are set on med school, did well as an undergrad, do well in the pre-med requisites and the MCAT, the RT degree and experience working with patients will not add that much to your application.. in other words, you can start the LONG process of becoming a physician and get in to medical school earlier without the degree.. however, if you are unsure if medicine is for you, this experience may help confirm (or deny) the desire.. but if you are not certain, i believe it would be a lot easier and more helpful to shadow physicians to get a true feel for being a doctor. not to mention, shadowing physicians gives you plenty to talk about during interviews about your desire to become a physician and helps you choose a specific field of medicine to pursue.. good luck and feel free to PM me if you have any questions about the application process..
 

rtdoc

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As a former Respiratory Therapist for nearly 5 years and now currently in my 2nd year of Medical School, I would not have done it any differently any other way. The experience that I have gained being a RT in the field have helped me tremendously so far in medical school and I hope that it keeps helping me as I go through this path. Why did I choose to go to medical school? It is something that I always wanted, but life has kept me from achieving it until a few years ago.

Initially, I chose RT field for a career in the health care field because I did not know what to do with a BS in Bio and not able to be accepted into medical school after finishing my BS. Needed a profession and wanted to stay in health care and not be a research assistant or teach high school. What this profession has taught me is to how to interact with patients, physicians, nurses and all members of the health care field. It has given me an insight of what physicians goes through during a residency and seeing them become a faculty at the end. Also, you see physicians at their worst and best behavior and how they interact with patients when they are on call and being sleep deprived for over 24 hours. That part is that you don't see when you shadow a physician for a week or a month. The best part of being a RT is too see that you helped the patient feel better and also contribute to their recovery. Also, keep in mind that being a RT you are considered the lowest tier of the Allied Health Profession, but you are the first one to be called if the patient is having breathing problems (in the hospital setting).

Anyhow, to answer your question... if you want to go to medical school, just do what you need to do.. finish the prereqs and score high on the MCAT and shadow a physician to see if this is what you want. Volunteer in a Hospital and get some exposure to the health care and I know that you will do fine. Call the medical schools that you are interested in applying and asked them what are they looking in a candidate. Consider both allopathic and osteopathic medical schools. Do your research and I don't see any problems if you want to go through this path.
 

DOctorJay

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Being able to work as an RT during medical school will be hugely beneficial to you if you can find a job with per diem hours. You will not be able to work very frequently because medical school is extremely demanding but you'll easily squeeze in 1-2 days a month and be able to make more money than most jobs your classmates will be able to get. You will also be able to continue your patient contact and skills which will always come in helpful in the future.

-J