Medicine is a career of different duration depending on the country.

In Spain it has a duration of 6 years, added to 4 years of specialization (MIR). In other words, a total of 10 years of minimum training to practice as a doctor in the public health system in Spain.

In this article we will know 12 main reasons that answer the question: Why study Medicine? As we will see, the reasons are of different types and have to do with different incentives and sacrifices that you must make if you choose this race.

Why study Medicine? 12 reasons to study this career

As we said, studying medicine involves a great deal of dedication.. That is why people who study medicine often have a clear vocation, since it is not a short career and involves considerable sacrifice. In addition, training does not end with career and MIR, as doctors are trained throughout their career, due to advances and updates in medicine.

Evidently, each person is different, and the choice to study medicine would vary from person to person; that is, the reasons for each will always be different. However, we are going to propose some of the reasons that may explain why this career is chosen, selected from some studies and surveys carried out with doctors and future doctors:

1. Vocation

Why Study Medicine? The first motive we propose is clearly the vocation. If you have a vocation as a doctor, to help others, to know illnesses, in short, to dedicate your life to health and the healing of illnesses and patients, it is a good option to study medicine.

Vocation is a key element in the choice of a future as it is something very instinctive, that is felt within, and that guides us when choosing what we want in life. In addition, when there is vocation there is passion, a fundamental element in human motivation that will drive us to be professionals and achieve excellence in our field.

2. Job Opportunities / MIR Places

In Spain, if you study medicine, it is highly probable that you could end up practicing in Public Health.. This is demonstrated by the number of MIR vacancies that are offered each year, as well as by the growth in the number of vacancies per vacancy. Specifically, 6,797 places for doctors have been announced in 2020, 284 more than the previous year.

In addition, after the MIR there are also competitive examinations to find a permanent job as a doctor, not counting other types of contracts (replacements, indefinite contracts, etc.).

It should also be borne in mind that many doctors also practice in private healthcare, both in their own practices and for private mutuals or private medical centres.

3. Helping others

Linked to motive 1, we found this one: the fact that you can help others. As a doctor you have the opportunity to help so many people every day. It is a people-centred profession (most of the time, as you can also work in the field of research, for example).

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The treatment with the patient is fundamental and exists for practically all the specialties in medicine. So if you like people and help others, medicine may be a good option. In addition, they are helped in a very important way, which is to make them feel better and help them heal.

4. Knowledge and training

But motives don’t exist only for when you have finished your degree and are practicing; there are also motives related to your own degree.

Thus, training in medicine offers a large amount of knowledge in relation to very diverse topics, such as different medical specialties, different types of diseases, treatments, research, technology, etc…

I mean, the career offers an inexhaustible source of knowledge that the pupil will be acquiring and that will enrich you in many ways.

5. Quality education

Spanish medical schools have a lot of investment that allows them to promote the updating of methods, knowledge, training, etc.etc.

In other words, in addition to the fact that training in medicine offers a great deal of knowledge, it is of quality. Spanish universities have great prestige, especially those of Barcelona and Madrid. And in other countries, in general, medical training is also one of the most requested and socially respected.

Theoretical training is supplemented by practical training (each year’s practical training), which enables future doctors to be trained with guarantees of professionalism and exigency.

6. Improving society

Linked to the above motives in relation to the motives for which to study medicine, we find that of improving society. Studying medicine allows us to help many people, and that contributes to the well-being of society..

So it allows us to improve society, for example through the transmission of knowledge (in different trainings carried out by doctors), but also thanks to the treatment of the patient (when they are told what disease they have, how to prevent other diseases, how to treat themselves, how to take care of themselves, etc.). In other words, we are talking about an improvement in people’s daily lives but, with everyone’s contribution, also on a large scale, increasing life expectancy and the well-being of our fellow citizens.

7. Recognition

There are people who, through their studies, also seek recognition in their profession.. Becoming a doctor is a source of pride, since it is a long career and requires dedication; moreover, doctors in general have always enjoyed good recognition by society, as it is a figure of help to others, social commitment and high knowledge.

8. Personal Overcoming

Deciding to study medicine doesn’t have to be an easy decision. getting access to it requires having a very high cut-off score in selectivity and a very good high school transcript (at least for access to the public university).

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In addition, more and more people want to study this career, and so the competition increases (both in public and private universities). For all these reasons, not only to obtain a place in the faculty, but to finish the race, is already a merit that implies a great personal overcoming and a great sacrifice.

9. Great variety of specialties

Another reason why studying medicine is the large number of specialties that this science of health offers. In Europe, there are a total of 49 specialties in medicine, which are accessed through the MIR (Médico Interno Residente).

So, if we are not clear about what we like, we have many options to choose from. These specialties are as diverse as: pediatrics, oncology, neurology, geriatrics, forensic medicine, hematology, surgery, family doctor (general medicine), intern, urology, rehabilitation, rheumatology, etc. I mean, there’s something for everyone.

10. Scientific interest

Medicine is a scientific career that offers great knowledge in different sectors of science. Both in the career and in the development of the profession, science is one of its axes. That’s why if you like science, this race may be a good option.

11. Beyond a profession

Many people who want to end up practising as doctors realise that the profession goes beyond the practice or the hospital, and that it is an inherent way of life for everyone.

This reason why studying medicine has a lot to do with vocation. Just like that, people who choose this path end up realizing that medicine “is their life”, that it is part of their person and that defines them.

12. Variety of career opportunities

The last reason we propose to take into account is the variety of career opportunities offered by the career. Thus, it is possible to work in different fields and sectors, not only in the classic hospital or in the health sector; it is possible to work in medical centres, hospitals, rehabilitation centres, in public health, in the private sector, in mutual insurance companies, etc.

In addition, it is possible to work in “other types” of medicine, further away from the usual health context, such as sports medicine, occupational medicine, rehabilitative medicine, etc. On the other hand, you can also work in research, teaching, etc..

Bibliographic references

  • Flores, M., Góngora, J.J., López, M.V. and Eraña, I.E. (2019). Why become a doctor? The motivation of students to choose medicine as a professional career. Educ Med: 2-4.

  • Garcia JC. The decision to study medicine. Educ Med Health 1970; 4: 277-94.

  • Gutiérrez-Medina, S., Cuenca-Gómez, D. and Álvarez-De Toledo, O. (2008). Why do I want to be a doctor? Educ. med, 11(suppl. 1).