The South Dakota healthcare system owes a lot to its doctors who work tirelessly every day to help patients in need. Their myriad responsibilities include diagnosing and treating illnesses, carrying out various kinds of surgeries, prescribing medicines, giving advice on preventive care and initiating diagnostic tests, etc.
According to the latest available records of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were about 400 employed physicians, surgeons and ophthalmologists (other than pediatric) in South Dakota in 2019. Do you aspire to join their ranks in the future? Read this guide to find out how you can do that.

Should I Become a Doctor in South Dakota?

Education Required Bachelor’s degree followed by a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) or a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree.
Major Requirement Medicine
License/Certification Required
Experience/Training Required
Key Skills Critical and Creative Thinking, Reading Comprehension, Social Perceptiveness, Communication, Active Listening, Problem Sensitivity.
Annual Mean Wage,National $203,450 (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric)
Annual Mean Wage (2019)- SD $218,290 (Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric)
Nationwide Job Outlook (2018-2028) 7% (Physicians and Surgeons)

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

Career Requirements

To become a Doctor in South Dakota, the first thing you need to do is get your Bachelor’s degree. After that, you must complete your medical degree (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine or Doctor of Medicine) before entering a residency program at a South Dakota hospital. You must have excellent communication ability and critical thinking skills as a doctor.

Steps to Become a Doctor in South Dakota

To become a doctor in South Dakota, follow the steps outlined below.

  1. Acquire Your Bachelor’s Degree

  2. This is the first step on your journey. You may choose any subject to specialize in. But, you are advised to at least take some courses in science and related areas. There are also specific pre-medical pathways available in some schools where they teach aspiring doctors about basic medicine, biology, psychology, anatomy and physiology, etc.

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

  2. After earning your Bachelor’s degree, you can take the MCAT. Doing well on this test is very important because your admission to med school hinges on it.

  1. Get a Degree in Medicine

  2. Once you are in medical school, you will spend the next 4 years studying towards an MD (Doctor of Medicine) or a DO (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) degree. Both specialties will include academic coursework along with clinical instruction.

  1. Enter a Residency Program

  2. After medical school, you have to enter a residency program at a hospital or a health facility of note. A residency is paid training on the job. It can take about 3 years or 7 years or anything in between. The time taken will ultimately depend on your chosen specialty.

  1. Enter a Residency Program
  2. Apply for Your License
    Following the completion of your residency, you can apply for your license with the South Dakota Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners (SDBMOE). They run a sophisticated verification and assessment system for granting licenses to medical practitioners. Once you have your license, you will be able to work independently as a Doctor in South Dakota.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Doctor in South Dakota?

Your journey to becoming a doctor will begin with an undergraduate degree. The 4-year program will give way to medical school which takes another 4 years. After that, you will have to enroll in a residency program at a reputed health facility. Depending on your specialty, you will be spending 3 to 7 years in this program. In total, you will need between 11 and 15 years to become a Doctor in South Dakota.

What Are the Requirements for Becoming a Doctor in South Dakota?

To become a Doctor in South Dakota, the following requirements must be fulfilled.

  • Earning an undergraduate degree.
  • Completing medical school with either an MD (Doctor of Medicine) or a DO (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) degree.
  • Finishing a residency program at a South Dakota hospital.
  • Obtaining a license from the South Dakota Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners (SDBMOE).

How Much Can I Make After Becoming a Doctor in South Dakota?

The annual mean wage for South Dakota for Physicians, All Other; and Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric in 2019 was $218,290. This information has been taken from the most up-to-date records of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.