Education
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How Do I Become an Emergency Care Physician?

Erin J. Hill
Erin J. Hill

In order to become an emergency care physician, you will need to complete a four-year degree, followed by several years in medical school. After that, you'll also have to complete a residency. This is a continued training opportunity where you will treat patients as a physician, but under the guidance and supervision of other doctors. When your residency is completed, you can become a board certified doctor.

The first step you will take to become an emergency care physician is obtaining a bachelor's degree. If you have not entered college yet, you should think long and hard about whether becoming a doctor is what you really want to do. It's not an easy career path to take, and it will be many years before you are able to practice medicine on your own. When you do enter college, many will recommend that you pursue a science-related major. This is not always necessary, so there is not need to worry if you are already majoring in something else entirely.

Emergency departments employ emergency care physicians.
Emergency departments employ emergency care physicians.

Once you have completed your four-year degree, you will have to take an entrance exam to get into medical school. In the United States, the test you would take is called the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT), and other nations require similar tests. Passing this test is necessary for entrance into all medical schools. Although you may be allowed to take the test more than once if you fail the first time, many medical schools will frown on those who require multiple attempts.

After passing the entrance test, the next thing you'll do to become an emergency care physician is attend medical school. To do so, you'll need to fill out applications for entry, much like you do for any four-year university. This is where you'll learn the procedures and practices needed to be a doctor. During medical school, you won't specialize in anything in particular. All students learn everything they can about all aspects of medicine. You won't begin the final specialization training needed to become an emergency care physician until you start a residency program.

A residency is a combination of instruction and working. You will be a practicing doctor, but you will be under the instruction and guidance of advanced physicians. If you are determined to become an emergency care physician, your residency will take place in an emergency room, and your training will be geared toward the skills you need to know for that particular area of medicine. Some programs last longer than others, and in some cases you might be able to specialize in more than one area.

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    • Emergency departments employ emergency care physicians.
      By: EyeMark
      Emergency departments employ emergency care physicians.