What Does a Doctor Do?

A doctor is someone who practices medicine to maintain or restore human health. Doctors can specialize in any area of human (body) health. For instance, a doctor can work as primary care physicians or they may specialize in a specific areas of medicine and work as Internists, Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Neurologist, Pediatricians, Physicians and Surgeons etc. Their duties vary based on their area of specialization. However, a few duties are performed by all doctors that include,

  • Assessing symptoms of illness and giving diagnosis.
  • Prescribing a treatment based on given diagnosis.
  • Collaborating with other health professionals as needed.
  • Prescribing and administering medication as required.
  • Staying updated on medical research and technology.

Should I Become a Doctor in Philadelphia?

If you want to become a doctor in the state of New York, then you have to follow the following steps.

Education Required

Bachelor’s Degree and a Medical Degree


All doctors should have a license


Residency of 3 – 9 years is needed for licensure

Key Skills

Good communication skills, Patience, Dexterity, Strong emotions, etc.

Annual Mean Salary – US (2020)

$218,850 (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric)

Annual Mean Salary – Pennsylvania (2020)

$202,340 (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric)

Job Outlook – Pennsylvania (2018-2028)

8% (Physicians, All Others)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and O*Net Online

How to Become a Doctor in Philadelphia?

The career of a doctor is very demanding and time-consuming. It takes at least 10 to 12 years to become a licensed doctor. If you are ready to commit yourself to this noble profession, then read the guideline below to get started.

  1. Educational Requirement

  2. There are two ways an aspiring candidate may begin working to build a career in medicine as a doctor.
    1. The first way is through completion of a 4-year bachelor’s degree. Upon successfully completing this degree, all potential doctoral candidates are required to take the Medical College Admission Test. A good score in this test is the pre-requisite for enrollment in the 4-year medical school degree.
    2. The second way is for high school graduates to try and get enrolled in a 7-year accelerated medical school degree. This degree is a combination of a 3-year bachelor’s degree and 4-year medical school training.

  1. Residency-Field Experience Requirement
  2. Medical students are supposed to choose an area of specialization for their residency. Medical school graduates complete their residency at a hospital and may take anywhere between 3 to 7 years.

  1. Licensure Requirements
  2. >
    Doctors who want to practice medicine in the U.S. are required to obtain a state issued license after clearing the USMLE exams and completing all educational & residency requirements. The process of obtaining a license in Philadelphia, PA is explained below.

What Are the Steps of Obtaining a License for Doctors in Philadelphia?

The last step towards practicing medicine as a doctor is acquiring a state issued license. Here is the detailed process of becoming a licensed doctor in the state of Pennsylvania.

  1. The USMLE & The ECFMG

  2. • The U.S. Medical License Examination (USMLE)
    Whether the doctors have completed their medical education from an accredited institution in the U.S. or from a medical school abroad, they are mandated to clear all 3 USMLE exams if they want to practice medicine in the U.S.
    • The Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates Certification (ECFMG)
    Doctors with a medical degree from outside the U.S. must apply and acquire this certification to enroll in a residency program at a hospital.

  1. The Match OR the NMRP

  2. The National Resident Matching Program commonly known as “The Match” takes place every year. It is a process that matches medical school graduates with suitable residency programs at hospitals.

  1. Application for Licensure with the Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine

  2. The Pennsylvania State Board of Medicine (PSBM) requires prospective candidates to submit an application and pay the application fee after completing all of the afore-mentioned requirements. After scrutinizing your application, the board will issue a license.

How Much Can I Make as a Doctor in Philadelphia, PA?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Physicians and Surgeons working in the state of Pennsylvania earned an annual mean salary of $195,810 in 2018. Furthermore, the data on BLS website depicts Pennsylvania as the 5th state with the highest employment level for this profession in 2018. The BLS also projected a 7% employment growth for Physicians and Surgeons in the U.S. from 2018 to 2028.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Doctor in Philadelphia?

The timeframe will vary according to the field of specialization and the kind of doctor you want to become. All in all it can take you somewhere between 8 to 20 years to become a doctor in Philadelphia.

What Are the Requirements to Become a Doctor in Philadelphia?

In order to become a doctor in Philadelphia, you have to meet the following requirements:

  • Get a bachelor’s degree.
  • Get a medical degree.
  • Complete residency.
  • Get state license.

Career Outlook for Doctors in Philadelphia?

According to the latest figures provided by O*Net Online, “Physicians, All Others” working in Pennsylvania are expected to enjoy a job growth of 8% between 2018 and 2028.