Why Patient Care Experience is Important for Medical Students in the Caribbean

Experience is always beneficial in the field of medicine. Working with patients inside a clinical environment in a clinical setting, providing healthcare, and addressing the health needs of people, offers the right exposure to a young student before joining they join medical school programs.

Only a good GPA and MCAT scores will not suffice to beat the competition of merit in medical school applicants. Aspiring medical students are reviewed on their personal qualities and values too.

Students can gain such experience through volunteering for health camps, or working as a medical scribe, shadowing a physician in a hospital. Gaining this exposure provides the right understanding of the requirements that doctors are expected to meet on a daily basis.

It is also the right way to find out if a student is truly willing to join the medical profession and provide quality healthcare to people.

Are you a medical school aspirant? Read on to know some medical school prerequisites in the Caribbean:

Is patient care experience mandatory?

Gaining experience from working with patients is a mandatory criterion in the admission process across schools in the US and Canada. The expected hours of patient care experience in the Caribbean are also relatively less than that of most American and Canadian medical schools.

Some of the top colleges in the Caribbean have a requirement of direct patient care experience for a minimum of 50 hours.

Clinical experience can be earned by voluntary experience at a clinical setting and or by working as an EMT. Gaining such experience is invaluable as you will have real-world examples to learn from, and discuss in your interviews.

You will learn about the subtleties and nuances of the profession, and how it is not as straightforward as it may seem. Without having such lived experiences to discuss, your interview will not be fruitful.

Aspiring physicians consider the Caribbean as one of the best places to study medicine as the medical schools’ admission criteria in the Caribbean are more liberal and welcoming for others than the medical colleges in the US and Canada.

Working in a clinical setting in a professional way helps students to think and act like physicians in the real world. Students learn about the tremendous hard work and long hours put by doctors to provide health care.

Gaining such exposure before applying to medical school is crucial as students can now have a clearer idea of what they want to choose as their vocation.


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