Paediatrician / Paediatric Surgeon
Who Is A Paediatrician/ Paediatric Surgeon
A Paediatrician/Paediatric Surgeon is a doctor who specialises in providing medical care to children and performs surgery if the illness, injury, or disease of the child so requires. As a Paediatrician/Paediatric Surgeon, you will be diagnosing and treating injuries and illnesses in babies, children and young teenagers and helping them overcome health problems. As a paediatric surgeon, you will additionally take over cases referred to by a paediatrician that
require surgical attention.
Performing routine examinations. Your primary job will be to examine young patients on a regular basis, to evaluate their growth and development.
Consulting patients for treatment. You will provide consultations to children for the pain, illness or any other health disorder that he/she is facing.
Deciding on the tests and medications. As a paediatrician/paediatric surgeon, you will prescribe preliminary tests and interpret results to gain more medical insight into the patient’s condition. You also will have to prescribe medication and other remedies as per your understanding of the medical condition and advise surgical procedure.
Performing surgeries if required. You will need to conduct surgeries upon patients if the situation demands. Surgery may be required for unwanted growths like tumours, congenital disabilities (birth defects) and abnormalities etc.
Discussing treatment plan and health with parents. Your patients will almost always be too young to comprehend or explain their health problems. Therefore it will be your duty to listen to the parents and also provide them with necessary information and explanation about their child’s health and treatment plan. You will have to inform them regularly with test results and take their permission before making any medical decision
Monitoring and maintaining patient’s health progress. You will be monitoring the medical records, the history, test results, past diagnoses etc. for future reference. Parents might come to you regularly as their child’s paediatrician. Maintaining records hence is essential for reference purpose.
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What Skills Will I Need To Have To Do This Job Well?
As exciting as this sounds, there are some things you’ll need to learn to do the job right:
A paediatrician needs to communicate with both children and their parents. You should be able to listen to the children and understand their non-verbal cues as they cannot be expected to be very articulate. Besides, listening to the parents and conveying necessary information to them regarding treatment and any precaution is very important.
Attentive listening to the patient and the parent is critical to understand the medical history as well as the current problem. You have to be able to comprehend the patient’s body language and behaviour to understand the problem, as children are not often able to express their problem in a structured manner.
For more meaningful interactions with a child, you should be able to communicate with the child in a way most comfortable to him/her even if that means behaving like the patient.
COMFORTABLE WITH KIDS
As a paediatrician, you should be comfortable with children. They usually are scared of doctors and the medical processes, be it injections or tests. It would be very convenient if you have a way with kids.
As a natural charmer, you will be able to put the kids at ease and lessen their anxiety. You should be able to make them smile rather than be frightened or worried.
You should have good hand-eye coordination, manual dexterity and observation skills. A surgeon should also be able to work effectively under pressure and have deftness of touch while performing the surgery.
With children, the job of a paediatrician also involves a higher amount of problem-solving. If you face a new or unusual medical disorder, you have to dig deep to come up with the diagnosis. The fact that you cannot get much information from your young patients will add to the challenge. Therefore the ability to solve complex medical situations and taking decisions accordingly is vital.
Paediatric surgeons work in a team of surgery specialists like paediatric nurses, anaesthetists, paediatricians etc. As a paediatric surgeon, you have to ensure teamwork and coordination within the core team involved in surgeries.
A successful paediatric surgeon will lead the team and demarcate clear duties, apart from keeping the parents as a part of the information flow. As someone who needs to supervise others, you must help the team to utilise time effectively in an organised manner.
What Will My Workplace Look Like?
You can work in hospitals, clinics, government agencies or as private practitioners. In private practice, you can open your own office or partner with other doctors. You may have to work long hours and be on your feet,particularly in hospitals, outpatient departments and clinics whereas in private practice you can decide your work hours.
Most paediatricians work between nine and 12 hours a day, or 45 to 60 hours per week. Paediatric surgeons may comparatively keep irregular schedules and may need to work on weekends and odd hours as well.
What Is My Scope For Career Growth As A Paediatrician/ Paediatric Surgeon?
The paediatrician is a unique specialisation in the medical profession, and it is perennially essential for the society.The future in paediatrics is organ-based specialisation.
Paediatric surgery departments, in particular, will have to offer focused training in super-specialities like paediatric thoracic surgery, paediatric hepatobiliary surgery, paediatric neurosurgery, paediatric oncosurgery, etc.
In the future, children’s hospitals as well as mother and child hospitals, are more likely to be opened as paediatric surgeons partner with paediatricians and gynaecologists. So in addition to private practice, institutional jobs in paediatrics are also expected to increase significantly.
Thinking of a career as a Paediatrician/ Paediatric Surgeon? Take the Mentoria assessment & talk to our career counsellors to get personalised step-by-step guidance for your future career path.
How Much Will I Get Paid?
The exact number will depend on the reputation and expertise in the profession, but we can give you a general idea.
Paediatricians earn between INR 5,30,000 – INR 36,20,000 per annum in India with INR 11,60,000 being the average pay. The number only goes up as you garner experience and gain further expertise, particularly if you intend to open a private practice. The earnings in private practice will entirely depend on the reputation of the paediatrician/paediatric surgeon.
Okay, I'm sold. This is amazing
STEP 1: Class XI-XII/Junior College
You should ideally pursue a science curriculum from the very beginning with a focus on subjects like physics, chemistry and biology.
STEP 2: Graduate Degree
At this step, you will have to pass the competitive exams and follow the same path as a doctor. You then will pursue an MBBS degree, which will ideally take you five-and-a-half years including a one-year internship.
STEP 3: MD/MS/DNB Degree
Post MBBS, you can pursue the three-year MD or DNB courses in paediatrics. Similarly, MS in Paediatrics is a three-year postgraduate course in medical surgery.
STEP 4: Doctoral Courses/Post-Graduate Residency
After the completion of MD course in paediatrics, you can pursue DM in several specialisations. To continue in paediatrics, you can opt for courses like paediatrics cardiology, paediatric hepatology, paediatric nephrology, paediatric oncology and Paediatrics Gastroenterology. Similarly, after MS in Paediatrics, you can choose courses like Paediatric Cardio Thoracic Vascular Surgery, Paediatric surgery etc.
STEP 5: Land a Job
At this stage, you are a qualified paediatrician/paediatric surgeon. You can choose private practice or employment in a healthcare institute.
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