North Carolina’s doctors work tirelessly to help people recover from any injuries and illnesses that might befall them. They are responsible for diagnosing patient conditions, suggesting treatments, prescribing medicines, conducting therapy sessions and performing surgeries among many other things.
As of 2019, the Tar Heel State has close to 1,300 Family Medicine Physicians working in healthcare facilities within its borders. This is according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Do you want to practice medicine in North Carolina too? Read this guide to find out how you can do that.

Should I Become a Doctor?

Major RequirementMedicine
License/CertificationRequired
Experience/TrainingRequired
Key SkillsCritical Thinking, Communication, Therapy and Counseling, Social Perceptiveness, Problem Sensitivity, Active Listening.
Annual Mean Salary(2020)–National$218,850 (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric)
Job Outlook (2020-2030)5% (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric
Annual Mean Salary(2020)–North Carolina$198,750 (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric

Sources: O*NET Online and US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Requirements

To become a Doctor in North Carolina, you need to get a Bachelor’s degree and then go to medical school. After getting an MD (Doctor of Medicine) or a DO (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) degree, you have to complete a residency program at a well-reputed hospital. Moreover, doctors need to be good communicators, problem solvers and critical thinkers.

Steps to Become a Doctor in North Carolina

The process described below will help you become a Doctor in North Carolina.

  1. Enroll in an Undergraduate Degree Program

  2. This is the start of your journey to becoming a doctor. You may take some science courses like biology, physics, psychology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology, etc. A specific pre-medical track is also available at many schools for aspiring doctors around the state.

  1. Sit for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)

  2. Once your Bachelor’s degree is done and dusted, you will be eligible to appear in the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). Try to score as high as you can on this exam to give yourself the best chance of admission.

  1. Enter Medical School

  2. It takes 4 years to finish medical school. You will be studying to earn either a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) or a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree.

  1. Residency Training

  2. Once medical school finishes, you must enter a residency program at a reputed North Carolina hospital. During this period of paid training, you will choose your specialty and treat patients under the supervision of licensed doctors. Completing a residency can take as little as 3 years and as much as 7 years.

  1. Apply for Your North Carolina Medical License

  2. When your residency finishes, you can apply for your permanent license from the North Carolina Medical Board (NCMB). You have to qualify all parts of the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) to be eligible. Other national-level exams like the Federation Licensing Examination (FLEX) or the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME) may also be acceptable. To find out all eligibility requirements, log on to the website of the NCMB.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Doctor in North Carolina?

To become a Doctor in North Carolina, you will spend 4 years studying for a Bachelor’s degree before heading to medical school for another 4 years. After that, at least 3 years will be needed to complete a residency. Many specialties require as much as 7 years in residency. All this adds up to a timeline of 11 to 15 years.

What Are the Requirements for Becoming a Doctor in North Carolina?

The following requirements must be fulfilled if you want to become a Doctor in North Carolina.

  • Earning a Bachelor’s degree.
  • Finishing medical school with either a DO (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) or a MD (Doctor of Medicine) degree.
  • Completing residency at a North Carolina health facility.
  • Attaining a license from the North Carolina Medical Board (NCMB).

How Much Can I Make After Becoming a Doctor in North Carolina?

As per the latest data made public by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Family Medicine Physicians in North Carolina were given an annual mean salary of $217,690 in 2019. This salary is higher than the national mean income of $213,270.

Career Outlook for Doctors in North Carolina

As per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual mean salary for the category of “Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric” in North Carolina for 2020 was $198,750. The expected job growth for “Physicians, All Other” in North Carolina is expected to be 8% between 2018 and 2028.