Career choice

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The issues are complex and have cultural dimensions. Experience has been shown to modify more extreme perceptions of subspecialities[1]. Realistically the tendency for medical professionals in all societies to drift to practice in urban, upper middle class environments, where they also tend to have been brought up is noted. It may be helpful to understand perceptions of your colleagues.

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London [2] [3]

  • Practical therapeutic success
  • Interpersonal relationships
  • Living and career compatability
  • Academic career and status
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Adelaide [4]

  • Scientific/treatment effective
  • Patient relationships
  • Usefulness of specialty
  • Intellectual/status
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East coast[5]

  • Lifestyle
  • Income
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West coast[6]:

  • Lifestyle
  • Controllable hours
  • Opportunities to do procedures
  • Therapeutic urgency and effect
  • Active tempo
  • Exciting settings
  • Intellectual challenge

West Africa[7]

  • Material rewards
  • Societal appreciation
  • Quick response of patients to treatment
  • Inspiration by teachers

References

  1. Furnham AF. Medical students' beliefs about nine different specialties. British medical journal (Clinical research ed.). 1986 Dec 20-27; 293(6562):1607-10. - full article is available in pubmed repositories
  2. Furnham AF. Medical students' beliefs about nine different specialties. British medical journal (Clinical research ed.). 1986 Dec 20-27; 293(6562):1607-10. - full article is available in pubmed repositories
  3. Woolf J, McManus IC. Medical stereotypes and medical realities. British medical journal (Clinical research ed.). 1987 Jun 27; 294(6588):1660. - full article is available in pubmed repositories
  4. Yellowlees P, Vizard T, Eden J. Australian medical students' attitudes towards specialties and specialists. The Medical journal of Australia. 1990 Jun 4; 152(11):587-8, 591-2.
  5. Newton DA, Grayson MS, Thompson LF. The variable influence of lifestyle and income on medical students' career specialty choices: data from two U.S. medical schools, 1998-2004. Academic medicine : journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges. 2005 Sep; 80(9):809-14.
  6. Burack JH, Irby DM, Carline JD, Ambrozy DM, Ellsbury KE, Stritter FT. A study of medical students' specialty-choice pathways: trying on possible selves. Academic medicine : journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges. 1997 Jun; 72(6):534-41.
  7. Ohaeri JU, Akinyinka OO, Asuzu MC. Beliefs and attitudes of interns at Ibadan General Hospitals concerning ten medical specialties. African journal of medicine and medical sciences. 1994 Dec; 23(4):341-6.