Some Things to Know About the United States Medical Licensing Examination

Medical students who would like to practice in the U.S. will need to ensure that they are able to pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE Step 1 and 2). This examination is sponsored by the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) and the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and it can be written on various pre-determined dates during the year.

What it is

All sections of the United States Medical Licensing Examination have been designed to assess a physician’s ability to demonstrate his or her patient-centered skills and to apply all of the concepts, knowledge and principles that form a crucial part of effective and safe patient care. Step 1 and Step 2 of this examination have to be passed in order for the relevant medical examining and licensing authorities to determine whether a student is competent and ready to deal with actual patients and real-life medical scenarios or not.

How Students are evaluated for Step 1

Students will be evaluated by means of a multiple choice question exam that is computer-based. Each section will consist of content pertaining to pathology, physiology, microbiology, pharmacology, anatomy, biochemistry and behavioral sciences. Interdisciplinary areas such as immunology, genetics, nutrition, aging and molecular and cell biology are included in this exam as well. Students will be expected to perform other tasks as well such as identify microscopic pathologic and normal specimens, interpret graphs and tables and/or apply basic scientific knowledge to various clinical problems. The 8 hour exam consists of 322 questions divided into 7 blocks of 46 questions per block.

Evaluation for USMLE Step 2

The USMLE Step 2 consists of 2 parts, namely Clinical Knowledge (CK) and the Clinical Skills (CS). USMLE Step 2 CK assesses a student’s clinical knowledge by means of a 9 hour multiple choice exam. The exam consists of 8 blocks, each with 44 questions and an hour is given for students to complete each block. Subjects covered here include pediatrics, medicine, surgery, psychiatry and obstetrics and gynecology. The CS section assesses a student’s clinical skills by means of simulated interactions with 12 different patients. Students have 15 minutes to perform clinical examination and take notes from each patient, and 10 minutes to note findings and provide diagnoses for each case.

Preparing for these Exams

It is essential for students to get as much study time in as possible when preparing, as this will help ensure that they are ready to pass the exams the first time round. One of the best ways that preparation can be done is by making use of online question banks, as these simulate the actual examinations that will eventually be written. It is normally recommended that students use these question banks for a minimum of 3 to 6 months, so that they can completely familiarize themselves with the type of questions they can expect to encounter during their actual exams.

Once students have achieved a passing mark for each of these examinations, they can look forward to being able to apply their knowledge in real-life medical situations at various hospitals, clinics and other health care facilities around the country.

Why Some Children May Never Get the Sleep Disorder Solution They Need

There is a growing trend in the area of medical treatment for children with sleep disorders, and it could spell big trouble for the suffering kids if it isn’t reversed soon. Dr. Dennis Rosen, a noted pediatric sleep specialist, recently pointed out the huge shortage of the number of qualified subspecialists in the field of pediatric medicine. Oddly enough, when it comes to physicians specializing in adult medicine, the trend is just the opposite: every doctor and his brother wants to be an adult specialist. Why the disparity? I’ll give you one gue$$.

Adult sleep specialists make a lot of money. A LOT of money. Those who help children to find a sleep disorder solution, on the other hand, don’t make nearly as much. Not only that, but those graduating doctors who want to work with children must attend even more years of medical training and residency. That means they’ll have to go into debt even further and wait longer to begin paying it back. That makes pediatric medicine very unattractive from a sheer financial standpoint. But the money issue, significant as it is, isn’t the biggest repercussion when it comes to the huge difference in the number of qualified sleep disorder specialists. What is the issue is the access to care.

With so few pediatric specialists in the area of sleep disorders available, that means one of two things. Either the affected child will have to travel great distances at great costs to get the care he or she needs, or that child will have to wait (sometimes months on end) before he or she can be seen by one of the few practitioners he can find. Or perhaps a combination of both.

Check out these sleep disorder statistics. According to the American Board of Pediatrics, there are only 751 qualified pediatric practitioners open for business in the United States. That’s only 1 for every 100,000 suffering children. And in sparsely populated states like Alaska, Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana, there isn’t even one!

Even though the US government is under great pressure to reduce medical spending, this is a free market problem that simply isn’t going to fix itself without some significant intervention from Congress. Too many children’s lives are at stake for lack of qualified medical professionals. The extra training is definitely needed (children aren’t just “little adults”). But something needs to be done to ease the financial burden of aspiring pediatric sleep disorder specialists. Otherwise many suffering American children won’t get the sleep disorder solution they desperately need.

How To Choose A Dentist

Don’t you know that dentists are one of man’s best friends?

Indeed, dentists are vital in anyone’s life. These professionals do not only take care of your teeth, but provide you with remedies and dental treatments whenever you need one. In fact, more than the aesthetic preservation of teeth, dentists offer other services that are very important to practically everyone including tooth extraction, dental crowning, orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics, endodontics, and even oral and maxillofacial pathology. As such, it is not surprising why these professionals are among the most demanded in all parts of the globe.

Usually, every family has a dentist that all members consult with.

However, if you move to a new town, or decide to have a dental exam, you must find a suitable dentist. Choosing a dentist is both easy and difficult at the same time. The task is easy because there are a lot of dentists in almost all areas; and difficult because among these dentists, you only need to choose one. The more difficult thing to do is choosing the most suitable one for that matter.

So, how should you choose a dentist then? What are some of the signs that you should for?

One way of finding a dental practitioner is through your insurance company. You can always call your insurance company and ask for a particular network of dentists that you can see for better benefits. Normally, insurance companies have a list of these professionals in certain areas. Their referrals are certainly credible since these companies have certain standards that professionals meet to be affiliated with a particular insurance company. Thus, it would help if you check on the network first before making any dental appointment.

Coworkers, neighbors, and friends are also great sources of finding a dentist. You can definitely ask any of them for recommendations most especially if you have just moved into town and you do not have any particular person in mind. It is worth noting that people usually give negative opinions easily; thus if you are able to solicit positive comments for a particular dentist, then he must really be a good one.

Finally, you should look for positive signs. These general signs more or else show that the dentist you chose is a good one. First and foremost, he should clearly outline treatment options, as well as the risks and benefits associated to each option. A good dentist will always provide you with more than one option. This only shows that he has a wide range of knowledge and is flexible to administer any of the options. Second, a good dentist should be able to chart finding in detail. Details are very important most especially in medical examinations. More importantly, he should take his time and pay close attention to details.

How to Find a Suitable Pediatric Dentist

Professional dental care for children should ideally begin at the age of 4 or 5. It is a true ordeal for the parents to get hold of a quality pediatric dentist who is both skilled as well as affordable. Choosing a suitable pediatric dentist plays a big role in determining the dental condition of a child throughout its growing stages. This is more true in case of children who fall under the age group of around 6 to 8 years. During this time their milk teeth gets replaced by permanent set of teeth. Proper dental care and adequate calcium intake is essential for proper development and growth of teeth at this stage. This again calls for professional attention and guidance.

If you are out here to learn more about pediatric dentists who can take better care of your child’s precious teeth, then you can certainly rely on the ensuing set of ideas.

You can start by referring approved directories like 1-800-Dentist. The list would provide you valuable information and whereabouts of reputed dentists near your neighborhood. Also, you can get an idea about their ratings based on the clients’ feedback.

Take help of your friends and relatives who had had their kids taken to various pediatric dentists. This would give you a closer review about the personal style and approach of various dentists. Try to concentrate on dentists who are more friendly with kids. This would encourage your kids to follow all the dental hygiene practices prescribed by him. This would create a more understanding and honest relation between the kids and these doctors.

Try to get better referrals from your child’s pediatrician or your regular dentist. If you trust your family doctors, you can surely trust their referrals too. You can proceed further by taking introductory appointments with few dentists who seem to fit well into all necessary criteria. You can finalize your decision by taking note of a few essential aspects regarding their working style. For instance, you may enquire whether they let the parents in while examining the child or conducting treatment procedures. You may also enquire about the timings for each visit, special schedules, how early the appointments should be taken, and of course, the rates. Also, you can take your child during your initial meeting. This would give you an opportunity to understand how friendly the dentist can be.

Use your instincts in judging the right person. Help yourself by learning about and comparing the years of experience earned by these dentists. Also, try talking with other patients present at their clinics. This would get you to the last pieces of information needed for finalizing your decision. And once you start with the sessions, you can judge the proceedings based on your own experience.