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Tough Question

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - DO' started by Halaljello, Apr 25, 2001.

  1. Halaljello

    Halaljello Hot Oil

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    I was wondering, what if during an interview, you're asked your view on an aspect of medicine that you dont totally agree with or that conflicts with your religious beliefs?
    For example in my religion, a woman cannot get an abortion unless her life is in danger or somthing like that...abortions are not allowed just because a woman was irresponsible...neway If in an interviewer asks me somthing about what i would do if i was asked to do an abortion on a woman who just didnt want to have a baby, should i just lie through my teeth and say that im pro choice and that I'd do it? Or should i tell him i'd refuse to do it regardless of it being legal because its against my religion? i dont like to lie, but i really dont wanna get screwed in an interview...any suggestions?
     
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  3. PalCareGrl

    PalCareGrl Senior Member

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    Jello-

    I don't think you should lie. Just be honest about your beliefs, but mention that while you would not be able to perform such a service due to your beliefs, you would find this patient a physician who would be willing to help her with this situation. I don't think that schools will not accept you based on your beliefs, they would be more likely to be wary if everyone said they were pro-choice even though other factors of their application, experiences, etc. might say otherwise.
    Anyway, that's what I would suggest (but I am by no means an expert, just part of a bioethics program). Hope this is helpful.

    [​IMG] Liz
     
  4. swdave

    swdave Senior Member

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    Halajello,

    The very question was posed to me:

    If you were qualified to do a procedure that you felt was against your values, what would you do if a patient asked you to do the procedure?

    I answered it the same way PalCareGrl said she would. I even used the example of an OB I knew and his approach to abortions. I mentioned that I would not try to push my beliefs on the individual or make them think it was bad what they were doing, simply that I choose not to do the procedure and that I'd find someone to help the patient.

    One caveat with that answer that I pointed out: What if you are the ONLY person within any reasonable distance that can treat the patient.

    Gotta run,

    Dave
     
  5. healthydawg

    healthydawg Member

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    out of the shadows once more...

    palcare was definitely correct. whatever you do, don't lie. this goes for not only moral/ethical questions but anything else they ask you. i got some of these questions as well; i think the point is not to see where you stand on stuff but rather whether how well you can take a position and make a reasonable case for it. after all, i don't think there's a single evaluation score-sheet at any school that assigns points for being pro-choice or pro-life.

    of course, there's a limit to this. if your position is something totally outlandish, you're out. (by outlandish i mean something like "i think we should kill disabled people" or something similar.) but abortion is the kind of topic that one could make a reasonable case for or against.

    having given that somewhat long-winded answer, let me add a good strategy for you if you run into this situation is to at a minimum acknowledge the opposing position. thus, if you are asked about abortion, you may start out with something like, "while i understand many women believe abortion is really an issue of having dominion over one's body, i believe...." this shows you have at least considered the opposing viewpoint and that your own judgement was made in light of this consideration. if you go in and say, "abortion is wrong because my religion says so, and that's the end," you probably won't score many points at all.

    finally, without going into specifics, i doubt lying is something your religion would condone. i mean, i don't know your religion (and i don't want to), but is there really any religion that would condone lying to get into med school?

    oy, that's enough. good luck, i hope it works out.
     
  6. healthydawg

    healthydawg Member

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    sheesh... i guess i wasn't done!

    i forgot to say one more thing. there are two more answers that you can always use. the first is, "i would ask someone for help." the ethical questions i was asked were usually in the context of a hospital setting. hospitals usually (always?) have an ethics committee of some sort. they are there precisely to help clinicians sort this kind of thing out. so i think a reasonable answer is to say, "i would consult with them." yes, it's a deflection of sorts, but it IS a reasonable one; medicine is a team effort isn't it?

    of course, you may be challenged as dave was with the, "but what if [some moral/ethical nightmare where you're the only one who can deal with it]." well in that case, if you can't think of anything to say (you don't have a clear choice), at least demonstrate that you understand what the dilemma is about and then use answer two, "i'm not sure what i would do."

    ok, i'm done.
     
  7. kidterrific

    kidterrific Senior Member

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    Reading your question makes your name funnier. Hehehe..

    If abortion is a sin in your religion and you won't get one, isn't lying a sin, as well? Don't lie. Be firm in your beliefs, and the confidence you put out will be respected and noted. I'm sure you've figured out that healthcare today is riddled with foreigners that have different beliefs. That being said, the topic is not as big a problem as you would think, and if they disagree with you, then you can simply state that the rest of the known world is dealing with it just fine.



    ------------------
    --
    KidT
    [email protected]
     
  8. Billie

    Billie An Oldie but a Goodie...

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    Sorry for a little off topic, but just my .02 ...

    It takes two to make a baby so it is not only the woman that is "iresponsible"

    thanks

    billie
     
  9. Halaljello

    Halaljello Hot Oil

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    kidterrific:

    just out of curiosity....what made u come to the conclusdion that im a foreigner? (<~~spelling)

    newayz, thanks for the response everyone!
     
  10. Dr JPH

    Dr JPH Banned
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    Hello Jello.

    I think that the WAY you answer the question is more important than the specific answer itself.

    Be honest during an interview. Never lie. Interviewers are great at breaking things apart.

    Best of luck.

    ------------------
    Joshua Paul Hazelton
    [email protected]
    University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (2002)
     
  11. kidterrific

    kidterrific Senior Member

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    I didn't. I just said that there were foreigners with different beliefs all over the medical profession.

    But it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that you might be Muslim.

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    KidT
    [email protected]
     
  12. alexcc_ms

    alexcc_ms Member

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    Ya don't lie at your interview. Med-school has enough liars. Cheaters too. Well, now wait a minute. I hate to encourage liars to apply and discourage moral people from applying but... If you make it to med-school you will soon find they (the liars and cheaters) are often the people that get what they want, they will take your place (in school or residency), they may get better grades, Yup, they generally go farther.
    But personally, if I wanted to be evil and conniving, I could have lied and cheated my way to success in a different field. It may take longer for the honest man to get where he wants, but that's a sacrifice you might be willing to make.
    If you're not asked whether you would perform an abortion or not, do not volunteer info. Many schools do not allow the question so tactfully stear clear.
     
  13. Mikado

    Mikado Senior Member

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    The only doctors that do abortions are doctors who are trained to do abortions. Because of your religion you are unlikely to opt for this training. So it would never affect you.

    If a patient wants a procedure that you don't approve of you simply refer them to another doctor who doesn't have a problem with it.

    If you don't even want to be near anyone who does abortions then go to Georgetown.

    Personally I'm pro-choice but I don't want to do abortions because they are depressing and gross.
     
  14. Djanaba

    Djanaba Senior Member

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    Most OB/GYNs have to observe the procedure and understand how it is performed. Some (far fewer than in previous years) programs require that you also learn how to do the procedure yourself. However, nowhere will you be required to perform the procedure in practice, with only very few exceptions (i.e., you're the only OB for many miles and a woman presents to the ER after multiple trauma and is hemorrhaging from a disrupted placenta -- you'd have to do it to save her life; the fetus may or may not be viable when you get to her) -- here, the blurry lines between responsibility and belief get blurrier. Easy answer: don't do OB. (But delivering babies is so GREAT!)
     
  15. kidterrific

    kidterrific Senior Member

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    I think that the key here is to be honest, but DON'T BE JUDGEMENTAL. If you tell them that your religion is against abortion, and your personal beliefs coincide with your religion, I think that they will respect your beliefs.

    But if you start judging the woman and call her 'irresponsible' then you are opening the floodgates for criticism and flaws. If you say that, they might ask how you would handle the situation if a girl was raped. Get the picture? To judge a person clashes with the opinion that DO's are on the more compassoinate spectrum of healthcare.

    Am I making sense?
     
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  17. Bubba

    Bubba Member

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    I was asked this exact question at my Kirksville interview. I told them I was personally against it but I think its everyone's right to choose for themselves. Then he went on to add variations to different abortion situations like when the mother's life is in danger. At the end he told me he didn't care about my answers and that he was just trying to figure out my thought process.

    I got waitlisted at Kirksville while I was accepted right away to every other school I interviewed at. Go figure. :confused:
     

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