Preparing Your Child For An Expensive Medicine Course

Guide To Preparing Your Child Who Wants To Become A Doctor

Preparing Your Child For An Expensive Medicine Course
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A couple of years ago, the Department of Health said that the Philippines need thousands of doctors to be able to adequately render service in the health needs of Filipinos. I believe that a lot of young Filipinos today would love to take a medicine course but why only few are able to attain it? What might be one solution for you as a parent to address this need?

As I tried to research the present conditions and factors of the medicine course in the Philippines, here are the interesting facts in brief I just found about it. (Based from different sources)

  • There are only five public medical schools in the Philippines and that tuition fees are not fully covered by the government. (DOH)
  • Private medical schools cost at least three times as much as government-funded institutions. (
  • Tuition fee ranges from 70,000- 250,000 per semester (My Finance MD)
  • The ratio of doctors to Filipinos today increased. The country has now a ratio of one doctor for every 33,000 persons (CNN Philippines)
  • 1 out of 30 Filipinos dreamed of taking a course in medicine but only 10% of them graduate to this course. (DOH)

The Most Common Reason

Given the five factors listed above, no article or research has yet to say about the main reason why young future doctors aren’t able to achieve their dreams.

I strongly believe this is the most common factor- Financial constraints.

 As a nurse myself, I have been a witness to many of my previous colleagues and classmates who really have the desire to become a doctor in the future. More than half of those I know say they wanted to take medicine but the lack of finances to support themselves stopped them from pursuing their dream. As a result, many of those doctor dreamers had given up and have instead pursued a degree they’re really not passionate about. Even if scholarships are available, many are still not given the opportunity to pursue the course because the coverage may only cover tuition fees and not to other expenses such as allowance, books and miscellaneous fees. Add that accessibility or distance from home to school. Public medical schools may offer full scholarship and everything but there are only five public schools in the country (As listed above). The slots to fill these scholarships will be full since the schools will only give prioritization to its residents.

That’s the reason why considering the fact that some of our children today might want to become a doctor in the future, parents should also consider their financial obligation to their child/children’s dream. 

The Solution: Invest As Early As Now

In my case, I also once dreamed of becoming a doctor and I want to take a specialization in ophthalmology or pediatrics but I already accepted my fate and embraced a new job that will help people manage their finances well. If God-willing, my long-term investments will be used to sustain my financial obligations of becoming a doctor someday. Even if that calls me to finish it at a later age because I believe education is not all about age.

So what’s my point of writing this? 

Not every child do not dream of becoming a doctor but as they are reaching the age of maturity, motivated by situation or environment, their dreams might change. As parents, we need to prepare for their future by investing as early as now. I’m not trying to be bias here (As I only picked MD degree to be the basis) but what if your child says, “I want to become a doctor” yet being a doctor is one of the most expensive courses in the Philippines or your child would like to take a course that is not found in the Philippines. Will you just say, “I can’t afford your dream. Take this course instead”? Or will you say, “Yes, I will support you. I have long invested for your dream since you were still a child”? 

Whatever your child wants to become in the future, it is better to correctly plan ahead and prepare for them in the future. Don’t always presume that your own dream should be your child’s dream. Don’t rob them for what they want. Even if they did not become a doctor, the good thing is you have fully supported them in whatever dreams they want in their lives.

Given the right financial planning, preparation and financial needs analysis, I am one with your child’s future.

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