So COVID-19 is over? Or so we think… the time that has passed since the pandemic was an epiphany for the preparation of future outbreaks.
A rising medical specialty, Preventive Medicine, has unsurprisingly filled that gap of preparation. Preventative Medicine focuses on the well-being of individuals, ultimately preventing diseases and disabilities. The FDA has been hiring Preventive Medicine Board Certified physicians for epidemiology studies with the rise of COVID in the hopes to control and track its prevalence. Additionally, patients have been postponing medical care and routine checkups, which anticipates an increase in mortality rates.
Most IMGs favor Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, or even Pediatrics but with the growing demand of physicians in the COVID 19 era, Preventive Medicine has been an advantageous specialty.
How do IMGs get involved in Preventive Medicine?
A “non-integrated program” Preventive Medicine residency starts on a categorical PGY-2 and goes two years to a PGY-3 while earning an MPH degree. Many IMGs are considering this unique specialty designed for doctors to teach, become corporate doctors, or go into epidemiology studies.
We now have helped about 25% of our candidates match into Preventive Medicine. Since it has limited clinical time per month (about 60 hours), many candidates find it an ideal residency due to it being less demanding compared to other specialties.
Preventive Medicine is also becoming culturally relevant given the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the push for preventive care services. Many providers and insurance carriers have removed co-pays, encouraging patients to take charge of their health and well-being.
Occupational Medicine is often offered alongside Preventive Medicine in many university programs while also providing an MPH as part of its curriculum. Physicians pursuing Occupational Medicine usually go into company medicine or occupational physician’s affiliation such as police officers, firemen, construction workers, or any field that addresses occupational hazards. They may work at worker’s compensation clinics or represent companies as in-house physicians for medical cases.
We have helped place numerous physicians into Occupational or Preventive Medicine pathways and witnessed its growing popularity and relevancy. Looking to the years ahead post-COVID, this specialty boasts increasing opportunities as healthcare providers look to innovate areas of Preventive Medicine.