Do nurses have an advantage in becoming a doctor? - page 3

Obviously a nurse would have to go back to school and get a bachelor's degree (if they don't already have one) before applying to med school. Would a nurse be better equipped to handle pre-med... Read More

  1. by   jesse_james
    Quote from beachbutterfly
    I agree with this poster so much!!!!Anything medical will be beneficial to becoming a doctor of medicine.You will experience what it is like be on the opposite site.You will be fluent in medical terminology,be ahead of technical skills and wont look dumb and chase nurses around asking zillion questions about the procedures when you first start off working as a res.
    With that said nursing shool is not a rocket since but still can definitely kick you in a a..and requires hard ad dedicated work to achieve the title of the RN behind your name...We do have a fair share of knowledge about chem,bio,math,and anatomy and of course patho.Dont forger that that people skills are very important in any medical field!!!
    Anyway you still didnt tell us what is your decision?
    My decision......wow....

    I guess I didn't think it would be demanded of me!

    Well, just to give some background, I'm 20 years old, I have 50 college credit hours under my belt, and I am an EMT-Basic currently enrolled in a Paramedic course. I've grown up around medicine (father was a DVM), and my experience in emergency medicine has really spiked my interest, leading me to consider becoming a RN with the possibility of studying medicine further down the road.

    I don't want to say that I'm making a concrete decision to become a doctor based on one forum thread. Nevertheless, the advice I have gotten from you all has pointed me in one definite direction. Based on your comments, I have concluded that, if I want to become a doctor, it's best to make a concentrated effort for that goal, rather than becoming a nurse first. As one poster pointed out, MCAT scores for Health Sciences majors are among the lowest, and as several noted, spots on nursing school waiting lists are limited.

    My only hesitation is that my previous area of study was in the humanities, and although I've always excelled academically, math and science has admittedly been my weak spot. So now, I turn my inquisitions towards determining whether I could survive college calculus, chemistry, physics, and biology.

    Thank you all for your help. I've always been a big fan of nurses since I was in the hospital as a kid with a collapsed lung. The nurses were great. And I don't even remember seeing a doctor.......
  2. by   NurseKitten
    Hire a tutor, and do the classes you feel are going to be rough on you one at a time.

    It might take you a year or so longer, but the gain in fundamental understanding will be priceless.

    Good luck. It sounds like you have your head screwed on straight.
  3. by   SweetLemon
    Becoming a nurse prior to medical school hinders your chances of getting in. I did some research on the whole thing a few years back and was told by several Advisers that a lot of Admission committees don't like taking nurses. With the nursing shortage why take a nurse out of their job when you can keep the nurse where they are and also get a doctor. Is this fair, not really but something to be aware of all the same.They also really dont like seeing nurses work while in medical school (though I would love to meet the wonder person who wants to try this insanity in the first place ). Having certain privilages as a nurse while having other privilages as a doc may be overlapped and could cause the hospital a lot of trouble if you "accidently" forget what role you are playing that day. In the end does being a nurse make it impossible to go to medical school, nope not in the least and I am sure in some areas you may have a bit of a head start but why put yourself through 2-4 more years of extra school. Just my humble opinion.
  4. by   Coloradogrl
    If you want to be a doctor you need to dedicate all your time to that and I would not major in nursing it wont help you

    A side note I went on studentdoctor.net and search 'nurses' and honestly I am somewhat disgusted
  5. by   samadams8
    Quote from Be_Moore
    I would almost say nurses have a disadvantage. Nursing school is difficult...a lot of BS work and studying. Most people's GPA's suffer a bit going into nursing school. I think I graduated with a 3.3gpa. When I was premed (physics, calculus, Organic chemistries) my GPA was a 3.85. So yeah, if I wanted to go to med school I would have been better off to keep studying chemistry and such...my GPA would have been much better.

    From the standpoint of now being a nurse...my experience in nursing would help minimally if at all in medical school. The degree that they learn stuff versus the degree they learn stuff is on an entirely new level. I know this because I have 2 med student room mates. We learn learn that warfarin is a "blood thinner" that "prevents clots." They learn the pharmacokinetics of it at the cellular level.

    If you are thinking med school, a degree in biochemistry would be your best bet.

    Well, call me crazy but we had to learn the pharmacokinetics for many things--and that was in my original school which was an ADN program--it was competitive to get entry into the program at that time. Frankly it's adviseable for anyone administering certain meds to know the pharmacokinetics.



    Some say that nurses often do well in medical school and in residency and often make great physicians. Plus nurses, particularly in certain areas, have more inside knowledge that surpasses the TV glorification of being a physician--not too far from the time they learn the deglorification of nursing from what's portrayed on TV--or what people think it's all about--as in thinking it's like a medical asst in a physician's office. . . lol. So not true in my areas of practice--but that has been mostly critical care in university hospital settings, inner city.


    Med schools are very open to various undergrad degrees and diversity. But they do expect your undergrad science GPA to be well above decent. . .and really they expect that for your overall cum. If you want to get in, even though they look at many things in the full application, it's best to get above a 32 on the MCAT and no individual score on it < 8 and the essay > K.


    Many sincere nurses have decided that they were more intrigued with medicine and moved into that role quite successfully. Adcom members look at numbers, generally on initial screening, but if you're called for a secondary and get an interview, they are really interested in the whole picture. Nursing or any other major will either add or detract from applicant desireability depending upon the whole picture of the individual and his/her application.

    If you are seriously committed to this incredibly arduous, really lifetime journey and have the true interest, intellect, work ethic/discipline, and other core skills sets like team work and IMHO some desire towards being humble, competent, and caring--then go for it, and don't worry about all the back and forth hearsay.

    And you must be an individual that can overcome discouragement and is geared toward intense persistence.


    Some of us didn't think of going to med school when we first went to nursing school. We weren't trying to use it as a stepping stone--unlike quite a fair number of nurses I've seen of late in critical care that use it and the critical care experience to jump into CRNA school so that they could make $140,000 per year. Yes some have a greater desire and commitment to that area of nursing, but I'm sorry. I've seen people play a good game and are so far removed from real compassion and deep interest--they just want to make six figures in 2.5 years, period. Yes these kind of folks are present in every kind of field--so I'll try not to be too hard on them.

    But I'm wondering why it's A OK for nurses to pursue mid-level status; but if they decide to pursue medicine, why they have wasted a spot in nursing school. ????? Sorry. That's faulty reasoning and schools know it full well.

    So as I said. If you are seriously committed to the long, ever-intense journey, do what you need to do and don't let other discourage you--unless you realize that it's really not what you want or that you really don't want to make this investment for the longhaul.

    It really comes down to at least 11 years of your life in education/training and then a lifelong commitment to the profession. It's good to spend many months at least,if possible, shadowing physicians in particular areas of medicine. It's no where near as glorified as some people think.
    Last edit by samadams8 on Dec 20, '09
  6. by   FowLaf24/7
    One should realize that one would need a strong chemistry background and good understanding of biology to make it through medical school. I personally do not believe a nurse would have an advantage. I believe to be a good medical student one needs to be very confident in their abilities too. One also needs to have a strong math and science background, and done reasonably well in these areas. It also takes lots of money to get through medical school. One either comes from a rich family, or the person has debt which requires one to choose an area in medicine where they can make lots of money (Family Medicine is not an area) to be able to pay the bill.
  7. by   FowLaf24/7
    I wish more nurses did have a better medical understanding and critical thinking skills. But a lot of nursing students just want to make through school and then learn-on-the-job. Believe me, this is more prevalent than one would wish!
  8. by   chosen50
    Plenty of nurses wind up entering medical school. You would be surprised of the number of those who intended to go to med school throughout the duration of nursing school. I know plenty of pre-med/dental nursing students. I hear the background in nursing helps very much. Some nursing programs consists of pre-reqs that one could easily qualify for med school. I don't blame those who decide to give it a shot.
  9. by   samadams8
    Quote from FowLaf24/7
    One should realize that one would need a strong chemistry background and good understanding of biology to make it through medical school. I personally do not believe a nurse would have an advantage. I believe to be a good medical student one needs to be very confident in their abilities too. One also needs to have a strong math and science background, and done reasonably well in these areas. It also takes lots of money to get through medical school. One either comes from a rich family, or the person has debt which requires one to choose an area in medicine where they can make lots of money (Family Medicine is not an area) to be able to pay the bill.

    Some FP physicians do better than alright financially speaking.
  10. by   lovelylady42
    It doesnt matter what your major is.
    You can major in opera if you wanted to as long as you have all the courses necessary for med school.
    And of course, nursing would be alot more helpful than opera.
    The point is they dont care what your major is!
    easy, hard, art or biochem it doesnt matter! as long as you have those required courses for med school!
  11. by   rachelgeorgina
    Here, getting into postgrad med counts on three things: GPA, GAMSAT (our version of the MCAT) & interview. In the interview, they look for people with life experience, amongst other things. Nursing would be pretty good life experience, I'd say.

    You're undergrad degree isn't important, even though 80% of applicants have theirs in medical science/science/biomedical science. Nursing students might be a bit better off than someone coming from an arts/commerce/business background but there's a huge gap between the basic sciences learnt in nursing and the complex scientific background required to take the GAMSAT/MCAT.
  12. by   sweetpriscy17
    Well...I have alot to say. YES YOU CAN GET INTO NURSING SCHOOL AND THEN BECOME A DOCTOR FOR SURE! I actually know a in law family member who was a Nurse and had her doctorates in nursing that got in without a problem to University of Miami Med School. She is a great nurse but now she got the chance to be a doctor because of her care and health care experience. Most of the doctors that are in hospitals do not know how to talk to people or show at least some care and arnet to informative to pts becuase they dont know how too! Obviously, she had to take the pre-requisites which are: Chem 1 and Chem 2 with labs, organic chem 1 and organic chem 2, Bio 1 and Bio 2 with labs, and physics 1 and 2 with labs and her MCAT! And she had all that done already along wth her nursing degree. When i go see a doctor at an ER or ICU or in a general room, unfortunately many doctiors now are very uninformative and do not have good bedside manners because they are there for the money and expenses. However, a nurse is the one that cares, treats and make sure the pts leave a hoospital healthy. Not he doctor he doesnt even know when the pts leave or not, yes he cures with medication and test but the nurse is the one that puts her 100% into the pts questions and well being and is their for the family. So if you have been a nurse,,,you will have respect and a good chance to get into med school as long as your grades are good and get the pre reqs done!

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