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How long does it take to become a Forensic Pathologist?
I am in 11th grade and I want to know more about this career. #forensics
Makayla forensic pathologists are medical doctors who perform autopsies on deceased individuals to determine the cause of death. Becoming a forensic pathologist requires significant postgraduate education. After completing your bachelor's degree you'll earn a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) degree in medical school, than you'll complete a residency in pathology followed by a fellowship in forensic pathology. State licensure is required in order to practice, and board certification is required by most employers. According to 2020 salary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the mean annual salary for physicians and surgeons, all other, a group which includes all types of pathologists including forensic pathologists, was $208,500. The BLS projects that jobs for physicians in general will increase 7% from 2020-2030. This prediction is attributed to healthcare expansion and an increase in the elderly population, although it is expected to be partially offset by advancing technology and a reduction in duties performed solely by physicians.
MEDICAL SCHOOL – Forensic pathologists are required to obtain either a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or a Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) degree. These programs are offered at medical schools and take 4-years to complete. Medical school admission is competitive and the vast majority of matriculating medical students have bachelor's degrees in addition to the prerequisite college courses.
INTERNSHIPS – Before entering residencies, training medical professionals must become licensed physicians by passing a state licensing exam. D.O.'s typically complete 1-year internships before beginning residency training; however, M.D.'s usually begin residencies directly after medical school.
RESIDENCY PROGRAMS – Preparation for a career in forensic pathology continues after medical school with residency programs, which usually last 3-4 years. Residencies provide beginning physicians with clinical experience in diagnosing disease and treating patients.
FORENSIC PATHOLOGY FELLOWSHIPS – After completion of a residency, doctors must also complete 1-year fellowships in forensic pathology in order to specialize. Fellowship programs are typically directed by the city or state Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. During fellowship training, fellows work beside skilled forensic pathologists, performing autopsies and participating in death investigations.
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