In economically developed countries, the profession of a doctor is considered to be profitable, profitable and respected, but in order to become a sought-after doctor, to work in a good clinic or hospital, one must go through a serious path. It is necessary to spend 6-10 years on training, to pass a difficult professional exam (before finishing the internship, which will take 2-3 more years) - and all of this spend very substantial money.
Is it possible for graduates to work in the UK and other Western countries, receiving a decent salary? We will answer at once: there is a chance, but for the realization of a dream it will be necessary to work hard.
1. Getting Started: Language Preparation for IELTS and Medical Terminology Studies
First, evaluate your possibilities as impartially and objectively as possible: visit the website of the General Medical Council and see what the procedure for applying for the PLAB exam (medical professional and language certification) is. GMC (Chief Medical Council) is the main regulatory body among UK professional doctors, monitoring the quality of care in the UK. GMC accepts professional examinations, issues licenses and certificates that give the right to carry out medical activities in Britain. Many people immediately note that internships and subsequent hiring are preferably given to representatives of Britain and the British Commonwealth, the European Union, Switzerland and India (Hindus have the advantage - they can receive medical education in their native language in English).
If the first meeting did not scare you away - prepare to take the IELTS test (you must earn at least 7.0 points out of 9.0 possible), and then the profile exams of PLAB. Alas, even excellent results on IELTS do not guarantee that you will easily understand the English medical terminology and vocabulary, so you should go to the special preparatory courses "English for Medicine", today it is offered by many well-known language schools and centers.
There are special directions for foreign specialists who do not have experience in the UK - they are aimed at an intensive study of profile vocabulary and terms. Training is conducted in several directions:
- Communication with patients
- Developing a strategy for improving understanding with patients
- Medical slang, idioms and common expressions, phrases
- Specific terminology
- Words and phrases used by patients (required for anamnesis)
- General English
- "Medical", special language
- Medical abbreviations
- Comparison of words and terms used in everyday life and during work with patients.
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Specialists are taught to correctly read medical records, medical newspapers and magazines, profile newspapers and articles; They learn by ear to perceive complaints by patients, understand the symptoms of their illness, learn the phone etiquette and rules of communication with other doctors. Attention is paid even to a special intonation: the doctor should be able to talk with any patient with interest, show empathy and participation.
Such courses are usually held individually (the cost is approximately 1,200 pounds per week), or individual lessons are combined with group classes (approximately 950 pounds per week). A great way to save money is to come to the training with a single group from one medical institution: in this case, the course will cost about 1780 pounds a week for all students of the group. When choosing a school or a center (especially if you will pass there and the practical part of the preparation), pay attention to whether there are practitioners in the staff of teachers who have personally passed the PLAB exam. If so, feel free to sign up!
2. Ready for the PLAB exam?
If you successfully passed the IELTS and are confident in knowing the medical terminology - feel free to apply for the PLAB exam. To do this, you need to fill in the registration form on the GMC website, attach a language certificate and a confirmation of the medical certification to it, and pay a registration fee. After reviewing the documents, GMC will send you an invitation and admission for the exam.
PLAB consists of two parts: theoretical and practical. PLAB 1 will require you to answer questions on various specialties (groups of questions of extended compliance). In total, 4 skill blocks are tested:
- The diagnosis (taking into account the sex, the age of the patient, the observed symptoms and their duration, complaints, specificity, be able to put a preliminary correct diagnosis)
- Conducting the examination (the doctor must determine the set of tests and tests that the patient must pass with certain complaints). As an alternative, it is possible to make a diagnosis on the basis of already conducted analyzes and results obtained in the course of the survey
- Treatment (using the data of anamnesis and examinations, the results of the tests the doctor must determine the course of treatment, and without fail taking into account the particularities and side effects of various drugs)
The fourth block of skills is more general and voluminous than the first three. You can be asked to explain the nature of the disease, the possible causes of the illness (taking into account the physiology and pathology of the patient), to outline the ethical principles of the doctor's work, the legal aspects of practice, can give a task on epidemiology, healthy lifestyle and its propaganda, valeology. This item will be easier to hand over if you carefully read the latest publications of profile newspapers, reference books and magazines, as well as materials on the GMC website.
The examination part of PLAB 1 itself is 200 questions, divided according to thematic blocks: each block is under the appropriate heading (it indicates what problem will be affected and what you need to know and be able to solve it). All answers must be the only correct ones, and the result depends on the number of correct answers.
The second part of the exam, PLAB 2 - is a practical test: objectively structured clinical studies (Objective Structured Clinical Examinations - OSCE). They have the goal of convincing the examining committee that the expert can apply theoretical knowledge in practice - special stations with various practical tasks are organized for this purpose. The examiner gives to work at each station only 5 minutes, and it is impossible to stay at the station for longer than the required time - the next candidate immediately follows you, and you must give way to him regardless of whether you completed the assignment or not.
PLAB 1 can be rented at the British Council office in Moscow (tests are conducted 3 times a year, the cost is 145 pounds), but PLAB 2 is surrendered exclusively in London (the cost is already 430 pounds).
3. Never drop your hands
The difficulty of finding a doctor in the UK is highlighted by the high competition between medical personnel. Already in 2006, there was an increase in the number of graduates of medical profile schools in Britain by about 20%. On vacancies among junior medical personnel (that is, among specialists with little experience) more than 100 applicants for 1 place respond! Alas, foreign students who received a certificate after successfully passing the PLAB exam in 20-40% of cases do not find a job within six months after passing the tests. If, despite everything, you are ready to overcome all difficulties and are confident in your abilities - be patient and persevering, and then you will succeed!