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Thoughts on RCSI

Discussion in 'UK & Ireland' started by oconnslo, Mar 9, 2007.

  1. oconnslo

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    Hi guys!

    I like all of the different ideas the threads about Irish schools have put in my head, and I want to throw one out to see what people think...

    I read a few comments saying that RCSI is so much more expensive than UCD, Trinity, or UCC. However, the latter three programs are five years vs. the four year program offered at RCSI. If you are in your residency after graduating RCSI and are getting paid during that fifth year rather than at school paying tuition, the total money over five years works out to be approximately even for all schools, but RCSI just gets you back out into the world a little sooner.

    Any thoughts/criticism about this idea is greatly appreciated! I want to make sure I'm not the only one seeing it this way (like maybe I'm overlooking something that I should know).


    P.S. Does anybody know exactly how easy/hard it is to get into a residency program in California after attending a school in Ireland???

    Thanks. :thumbup:
     
  2. leorl

    Physician Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Verified Account 10+ Year Member

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    I'd say the sooner you can go back, the better... the 4 year program is only new so this option wasn't open to most of us. It does work out roughly the same. the 5 year programs do give a bit more time to structure when to take the boards and do electives, but since supposedly RCSI affords time to study for these anyway, then more time shouldn't really be necessary. There isn't anyone at the moment from the RCSI 4 year program, and there won't be anyone from clinical years either (obviously because they haven't reached them yet), so it would be interesting to hear if they find their clinical skills to be equally or not as thorough, given 1 less year to practice and absorb information.
     
  3. eirosome

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    I could be wrong but my impression is that they can create a 4 year course by squeezing the preclinical years into a shorter timespan. They teach when normal 5 year students would be on holidays. The clinical years are the same as the 5 year.

    So the positive side is that you are out earlier, but the negatives may be that you don't have as much time to study for Step 1 or do research. Both of which may be important for trying to get a residency back in the US I am guessing?
     
  4. LGamble

    LGamble New Member
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    Of course, i also like the idea of graduating a year early, and I think its worth the extra money. however, even though you are paying for an extra year at all the non-RCSI schools, the amount you save is not trivial-- I think (if i've converted my euros to dollars correctly) its about $46,000.
     
  5. gmacpac

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    Calculating in Euros:

    Total tuition of 5 year Program (not factoring inflation) = 125,000 Eu

    Total tuition of 4 Year RCSI (not factoring in inflation) = 160,000 Eu

    First year Intern Pay = 35-50 k (depending on where your get a spot)

    You are right, you will end up saving time, if not money.

    I have been a clinician for the past three years, and personally I will rather finish up the schooling part, and jump right into the trenches of clinical work.
    Therefore, in my opinion RCSI is a good deal. If you want to take a more dispersed work load, then maybe the 5 year program is better. But speaking strictly in terms of time/money issue, RCSI is a more sound option.
     
  6. pattycanuck

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    Have things changed since I graduated from medical school in Ireland in 2003? ie. that you have to have at least one year of medical "electives" to specifically practice in California? No one in our class went back to Cali based on this fact ... and they were severely P.O.'ed - especially those who were born, bred and oozed Californian :mad:
     
  7. OP
    OP
    oconnslo

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    Nobody could get back? What is considered a "medical elective"?

    Now that you have been out of school for a few years, and excuse my lack of knowledge on this subject, but how feasible is it to eventually make your way back to California after a residency elsewhere?

    Thanks to everybody for their thoughts...good stuff.
     
  8. pattycanuck

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    did a simple google search with the terms: california+IMG+medicine

    It wasn't explicit on other sites, but the following was an example from the UC Davis Neurology site (http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/neurosurg/education/residency_img.html):

    Requirements for IMG Licensure in California - Foreign Nationals or U.S. Citizens

    1. Current ECFMG Certification.
    2. The following examinations and combinations of examinations are currently acceptable for licensing purposes in California:

    USMLE Steps 1, 2 and 3 (Has phased out Flex and NBME Exams)
    NBME Parts I, II and III (National Board Med. Exams)
    NBME Parts I and II and Component 2 of FLEX
    FLEX Components 1 and 2
    State Board Examinations (taken prior to June 1969)
    LMCC (Licentiate of the Med. Council of Canada-now called MCCQE or Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Examination)
    Original FLEX (three day FLEX weighted average)
    SPEX (Special Purpose Examination)

    3. Two years of ACGME approved postgraduate training in any state in the U.S. If training is NOT in Family Practice, Pediatrics, Surgery, Internal Medicine or Ob-Gyn, IMG must have 4 months of approved General Medicine postgraduate training; OR,
    current certification by a member board of the American Board of Medical Specialties or an ACGME approved specialty board; OR,
    take and pass the clinical competency exam (SPEX).

    4. All international medical graduates, with the exception of Canadian graduates (see "Special Notes" below) will be expected to furnish a current "Postgraduate Training Authorization Letter"* from the Medical Board of California (MBC) when submitting an application for postgraduate training at U. C. Davis. Fifth Pathway trainees will be expected to present a letter from the Medical Board stating that medical school training meets the requirements for licensure in the State of California. These letters will be provided by the Medical Board after a completed application to the Medical Board has been reviewed and evaluated.

    * Applicants for Fellowship positions will be expected to be licensed prior to training start date.



    Again, not sure if this applies across the board, but it may only be an example too and of course not representative of other disciplines and school. Best to contact the medical board of California: http://www.medbd.ca.gov/

    Good luck!
     
  9. mick2003

    mick2003 Member
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    I'd argue that you'd save a lot more in the long run -- you're out one year earlier which adds one years salary to the end of your career (i.e. at least $600,000 if you subspecialise or, as PattyCannuck did, $25K for primary care ;) )
     
  10. pattycanuck

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    Oh Mick you big lug :p

    We can in general earn US$300k/C$350k in many places for primary care (at least up here in Canada) and we finish in 2 years compared to our American FM counterparts who finish in 3. Yes, you can earn $600k also as a specialist, but work at a resident's salary level (ie $50-70kpa) for 4-5 years so us as primary care physicians have made $500k-750k more than our specialist friends over 2-3 years... and that takes some load of the crazy interest (yes crazy if you are $2-300k in loan debt).

    BTW, I earned 70kEuro in my first year as an intern in Ireland (for Canadians out there, at the time that was the equivalent of C$105k). Keep in mind that a large proportion of your earnings also goes back into living costs wherever you go. I also dramatically reduced my debt before coming back home by staying overseas (for personal reasons and those are known if you've read my comments here before).
     
  11. pattycanuck

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  12. leorl

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    A guy in my class will be matching into a Californian program (find out for definite tomorrow, of course).

    Also, do not count on getting an intern job here. Things have dramatically changed since Canuck's time and has culminated into a massive problem with job availability this year. Needless to say, it's a very messy situation. I'd still go with the 4 year option - if RCSI maintain the same standard of clinical teaching, then you'll still have the basic knowledge, even if you don't have the "extra year" of practice. I liked the 5 year programs, but by the end of the final year, you are so ready to get out.
     
  13. Sage880

    Sage880 Senior Member
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    Go for the 4 year program at RCSI now if you can. The only problem I've ever had with them is their outragous tuition but now they're more in line with the other schools money wise. 5 years seems a little too long for med school as well. 3rd and 5th year are really busy but 1st and 2nd (and I hear 4th) are a little light. I think most of the Irish schools are moving towards making their programs 4 year, post grad degrees but I have no idea when. Until then, RCSI is the better bang for the buck.
     
  14. TraumaCheers

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    Actually, you should think of it in terms of one year gained at the END of your career, -- i.e. 160K - 500K depending on specialty. So if you can come up with the funds, the economics argue in favour of a four year program.

    Edit: Just realized that Mick already pointed this out :)
     
  15. MsMLM

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    Hi All,

    I was so excited to receive a RCSI interview until I started researching the costs. Yikes! Seriously, how to people pay for the school? Loans obviously but I feel like it would take me my whole life to pay back $400K in loans. Esp. because I am not planning to make oodles of money. I'd like to go into family practice and work abroad in developing countries as well. I'm thinking it might be cheaper to reapply to US schools next year :(. Too bad because I was really looking forward to Ireland.

    Please let me know if anyone has advice as to how to pay for this school!
     

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