Med School Tips

What’s The Best Pre-Med Course For Filipinos?

What’s Your Recommended Pre-Med?

Many students who want to be a doctor are faced with the challenge of picking the best pre-med course.

Specifically here in the Philippines, the normal path is to finish any college course first that will serve as your “pre-med” – and usually, students are advised to take courses that will help prepare them best for med school.

Let me start by saying that no matter what advice you hear from your parents, your med student neighbor, your family doctor, or me (yes, even ME!) – in the end, there is no such thing as the BEST pre-med major. Why? All courses have their own advantages and disadvantages, and the experience is always different per person.

When you get to med school eventually (and you will!), you’ll realize that nothing could have prepared you for it fully, and it’s all just about striving and working hard every day.

Simply put, it’s not in the course nor the school. It’s in the student!

Doc, You’re Not Helping

I know, I know. You still have to pick a pre-med. In that case, I believe you should consider both PRACTICAL and PERSONAL reasons to end up with the best choice for you.

I came up with a two-part series on how to pick the best pre-med course for you and you can watch the videos below to find out.

I hope you learn a lot! If you found it helpful, please don’t hesitate to recommended my channel to anyone who might find my topics interesting too. It will honestly give me the boost to keep on making more videos every week. 😉

How To Choose Your Pre-Med/College Course (What’s the Best Pre-Med PART 1)

Part 1 Highlights:
Consider these practical things when deciding:
1) Location / where will you live when studying?
2) Tuition fee and scholarship opportunities
3) School reputation / student success rate – although this is debatable
4) Course duration
5) Job opportunities aside from medicine

My Advice In Choosing Your Pre-Med (What’s the Best Pre-Med PART 2)

Part 2 Highlights:
Reconsider your pre-med goals. It’s not just so you can get into a good med school or have an edge over your med school classmates.

Your only goals should be:
1) Develop good study habits.
2) Do not get into trouble.
3) Fall in love with learning.

And if you still don’t know what you’re interested in:
1) Google the course curriculum.
2) Google current students of that course.
3) Take a look at yourself – what you like to waste your time on, what you share on social media, what inspires you.

In the end – FOLLOW YOUR HEART. Your pre-med is your whole college experience already so make the most out of it. Stop worrying so much about med school while you’re not there yet.

How To Focus When Studying: The One Technique I Swear By

School is just around the corner, and so is the August Physician Licensure Exam for batch 2016! It’s time to get serious with studying!

Today I want to share with you a very effective studying technique that I just learned about and started using towards the end of med school. (How regretful!!)

I’m talking about the Pomodoro Technique, a simple focusing and time-management method that you should try next time you have a task that needs intense concentration and discipline. To know more about it, watch this video or keep on reading. 🙂

Subscribe to my Youtube channel if you haven’t yet. 🙂


Things I Should Have Done In My Clinical Clerkship Year

Clerkship is about to start for a lot of fresh meat este 4th year med students! I have a few tips for you based on the things I should’ve done (but mostly didn’t) when I was a clerk myself.

Make the most out of your final year in med school! It can be fun, memorable, and still high-yield if you apply the tips that I enumerate here.

In summary,
1) I should’ve taken down decent notes.
2) I should’ve mastered the common cases.
3) I should’ve left a good impression.
4) I should’ve take care of myself more.
5) I should’ve been more game.
6) I should’ve been more open-minded.
7) I should’ve been careful online.

Note that I trained in a public tertiary hospital where clerks do a lot of the leg work. Our experiences will surely vary, but everything I mentioned are generally applicable to any med student, no matter where you are in the world. Enjoy!

Wait! Maybe You Should Not Pursue Medicine!

In this post, I will talk about the five reasons why MAYBE you shouldn’t pursue medicine. You may or may not agree with me, but know that these are all just based from my personal experience.

In summary:
1) Obviously, don’t go to med school if you hate school in general. Maybe you’re the type who learns better from real life experiences outside the classroom? Med school is going to prolong your agony.

2) Don’t pursue medicine if you hate people. (Couldn’t think of a nicer way to put it when I was filming the vid LOL). Medicine is a service oriented industry, and you have to lead an entire health care team. In medicine, you’re going to work FOR and WITH people.

3) Don’t like hard work? There’s no escaping that in medicine. There’s only one way to advance – you have to put in the hours! Although, I personally don’t believe that anyone can be successful in anything unless they are willing to work hard for it.

4) This should go without saying. If you’re only in it for the money, you’ll be VERY disappointed. When you study and train for so long, you lose the TIME that could otherwise be spent earning elsewhere.

5) Finally – be honest with yourself. Don’t pursue medicine if you know in your heart there is something else you’d rather do. Give yourself a chance to pursue what you really want.

That’s it! If video #2 discouraged some of you, I’m thinking video #3 will make you back out altogether.

I’m thinking that’s okay. Ganun talaga sa medisina – matira matibay.


Steps To Become A Physician In The Philippines

How long does it take to be a doctor in the Philippines? I actually wrote about this topic a few years ago, and you can read that post HERE.

I also talk about that topic in this video.

For those of you who like to read, here’s a quick summary:

Most aspiring doctors start their journey as early as high school, especially in the new K-12 program wherein kids can choose the STEM track.

In college, one must finish any BS or BA degree and complete all the required science units for med school. Students also busy themselves with med school application and getting competitive scores in the NMAT during this time. 

After college graduation, you can take a gap year or go straight to med school. Med school in the Philippines is usually 4 years, the final year being “clerkship” or the year of clinical rotations. 

After med school graduation (usually in April), you get a diploma that says you’re officially an “MD” or a medical doctor, but you’re not allowed to practice yet. You still have to do one year of post-graduate internship in a hospital, unless your school requires you to stay in its own teaching hospital. 

Internship takes place from July 1 to June 30 the next year. Then there’s 2-3 months allotted for review, which is needed before taking the the September or March physician licensure exam

If and when you pass the boards, you can now work as a general practitioner, earn from “moonlight” gigs, take another gap year, or go straight to residency.

Pre-residency programs usually start in October, and if you get accepted, you officially start residency in January. That’s another 3-5 years of training to become specialized in a specific field like Internal Medicine, General Surgery, Pediatrics, Dermatology, OB-Gyne, Ophthalmology, etcetera.   

After residency, you may subspecialize further by pursuing 2-3 years of fellowship. 

If you add all that up, that’s around 15 years! But like what they always say – the time will pass anyway. 🙂


Q&A My Journey to MD and What’s Next After PBB

I recently did a Q&A video with my friend Baninay on her channel wherein I kind of promised I will answer all med-related questions in a separate video. Finally, here it is!

This is a quick summary of my med life so far – from my pre-med course choices, getting into med school, maintaining my grades, and my plans after my short stint in Pinoy Big Brother (PBB).

Side Note About (Finally) Vlogging

Well technically this is not a “vlog” because it’s not about my daily life. Nonetheless, this is my first time to create and share content in video format. It’s pretty exciting! For someone who likes to create graphics and edit videos for fun, why oh why did I only think about this now?!

Wait, no. I’ve been playing with the idea of venturing into Youtube for so long, but I didn’t want to start something if I’m not sure I can commit to it. I know, I know. That’s just one of my many lame excuses.

What pushed me to finally do it though? Definitely the people in my last blog entry who thought  I should probably stay a blogger and stick to writing.

Thank you! Didn’t you know? The only way to make me do anything is to tell me otherwise.

Hands up my fellow stubborn Taurus bulls! It’s our birthday month! 🙂