Online Medical Schools

Discussion in 'Nursing and medical-related degrees' started by Maxwell_Smart, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    The Student Doctor forum just might be the worst education forum. Just a mention of online classes will cause a bunch of people to snap. They're often factually wrong about things within their own field. There's this one guy in the psychology sub-forum who is nuts.
  2. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    That's bad stuff, and the Doctor suicide/accidental death issue is almost swept under the rug when compared to many other things that get publicity in the field. It's unnecessary to work people that many hours, and since there is a need for more Doctors it's ridiculous that the major medical credentialing/authority organizations make it difficult, one way being the anti-online slant some organizations are lobbying and some states are blindly following.

    There is an MD named Pamela Wibble who founded a business based on creating happier Doctors that work less hours and have more control, but it largely involves private practice which of course isn't for everybody.
    SteveFoerster likes this.
  3. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member

    I haven't thought about the issue very much but saw a video recently from a doctor that was tired of administrators calling it "burnout." He was very clear that what the industry is facing is "moral injury." Basically, you take a bunch of well meaning people that join the industry to help others and then put an almost infinite number of competing demands and roadblocks to actually helping people to the point it damages the psyche.

    Here is the video:
    SteveFoerster likes this.
  4. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    IUHS has fully updated their website, added some new programs, and are featuring some of their prize students who've landed residencies. I checked their landing map and noticed a few clinical sites and Doctors from their program having landed in my own back yard, so of course I had to contact someone. I was able to get in touch with one of the Doctors and had a brief but informative conversation.

    Apparently, IUHS has been hard at work lobbying in states where the whole online thing has become an issue. I guess it worked in New York because one of their newer Doctors has been licensed to practice and they have a site now added there. The Doctor I spoke to told me that they have increased some of the early clinical contact. My guess is that the move is a way of massaging the issue with certain states. Some of the newer programs are being used as a bridge for students that want medical education but are looking to get a base-level medical degree and then pursue a stateside medical school for the MD, but I bet this is more of a fail-safe measure to keep the school operating in the event that the hammer drops on one or both sides (Caribbean accreditation changes and/or U.S. licensing block-outs nationwide).

    Along with that are some friendlier systems to bridge EMTs, RNs, NPs, PAs and DCs into the MD fold, so the outcome of that should be interesting. The tuition is naturally more flexible now since they are allowing a lot more transfer credit and experience hours than before.

    Time will tell if the lobbying will be enough. It's going to be a question of how well they can do it versus how quickly the states are turning against online. New York seems to be softening a bit (and I say it's for the best) because in addition to their recent IUHS licensed Doctor, they have finally re-opened online learning acceptance across the board for Substance Abuse credentials. I guess they finally saw the light on how irresponsible it was to set up roadblocks while there is a literal opioid crisis taking place. You still need 1,000 hours to be a licensed massage therapist in New York though, smh.

    Anyway, I thought some may be interested in this. I say as long as they can navigate the possible accreditation and policy changes and remain legitimately accredited, I have no problem with the program.
  5. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    I didn't know that New York didn't allow online degrees for substance abuse counselors. Most people interested in substance abuse counseling are recovering addicts, and they're going to be non-traditional students who have to fit schooling around their jobs. When I was a counselor, a lot of the interns were finishing degrees online.
  6. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    New York did allow it for a long time, but only through a list of approved providers that seemed to shorten every year, a number of them mandated in-person residency. New York has recently changed course, so the approved list is much larger now and the residency requirement has been dropped with the schools I saw.

    About 2 years ago, I wasn't aware that New York had those restrictions. I was interested in gaining some Substance Abuse Counseling hours, so I contacted the Center For Addiction Studies and Research, spoke to one of the officials and was directed to a part of their site which discussed how New York had barred online programs, so any hours gained after some date in 2013 were nullified by the rule. I thought it was strange because I could see some programs in New York offering Substance Abuse Counseling, but when I called the New York board I was told that those programs were on the approved list but everything else was barred. I tried to argue that it didn't seem fair that only those few programs they approved were okay because those programs were online too, but no dice, they weren't budging. Glad they've changed, the situation is too dire to hold on to petty, archaic policies.
  7. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  8. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    The will of the student body will eventually defeat that. This incoming generation has learned everything it knows from the internet, so trying to bar that avenue from their learning methods will not go over well. Besides, the rationale behind barring it is flawed because one has to pass the USMLE 1 in order to move forward, so unless the medical schools are admitting the tests are bogus and have no bearing on competency, there is no reason to deny online coursework unless there is evidence showing a connection of deficiency between it and the subsequent USMLE exam. At this point, I don't believe the schools are making this move based on any such data, just old outdated thinking.
  9. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    In which case it wouldn't be "entirely online". As far as I can see, IUHS isn't accredited by CAAM-HP, which I personally consider to be the necessary standard in Caribbean medical schools.

    I agree.

    Starting in 2023, medical graduates trained outside the US and Canada will need to have graduated from a medical school meeting ECFMG (Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates) accreditation equivalency standards in order to qualify graduates to take the USMLE. CAAM-HP is recognized by the ECFMG and hence its schools will be USMLE qualifying after 2023. CAAM-HP bases its own standards on those of the American LCME (the Dept of Ed recognized medical accreditor) and is advised by the LCME.

    In California, where I live, in order to qualify for a state medical license, foreign medical graduates already need to have graduated from schools recognized by the state medical licensing board. This list is very picky and already pretty much follows CAAM-HP when it comes to Caribbean schools. I believe that a number of other states also use the California list. (So 2023 has effectively already arrived in California.)

    I think that IUHS and other offshore schools like it are unlikely to be viable routes to medical practice in the US for much longer.

    I do think that a hybrid mode of instruction in medical education might make considerable sense, provided that it isn't abused. Many aspects of medical education are things that I don't believe lend themselves to DL delivery. By its nature, DL is more appropriate to lecture classes than to laboratories and hands-on practical experiences.

    That's my opinion, anyway.
  10. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    In their 4-year system (and keeping in mind their more liberal transfer credit policy), since you can be awarded your Doctor of Medicine degree without residency, one could have reached that point through being educated entirely online. Granted, no state will license you without residency completion but it's not totally out of the question for someone to use the knowledge gained only for personal enrichment or to use to become a non-practicing consultant for some company as those positions tend to pay pretty well.

    The 2023 changes are going to make things interesting. A number of states are following California's lead or are planning to. I think IUHS realizes this, that's why in addition to their lobbying efforts they've added some newer offerings that would at least keep them hanging on as a preparatory program if the hammer drops hard. There is another school in St. Lucia (I can't remember the name off-hand) that operates similarly, but they do require some in-person attendance at the school. I haven't looked into their accreditation status.
  11. Jonathan Whatley

    Jonathan Whatley Well-Known Member

    Is the degree of MD appropriate for a program taken "only for personal enrichment?" I'm not convinced.

    There's a large number of IMGs and FMGs, even who qualify for ECFMG certification with an approved course of study and USMLE passes, who never get residency. Relative to this supply, how many nonclinical positions are there really that use that base of knowledge, (this is key) are well-paid, and (this is also key) hire unlicensed IMGs/FMGs?
  12. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    For a brief period of my life, I was a director of finance for a hospital, and community health and social services, in a remote location. One of our most knowledgeable and trustworthy “dr” was an immigrant from Egypt. He could not practice as a medical doctor, but he retrained to become a radiologist. He was often consulted by our bonafide doctors.

    It was a rural areas so we depended on locums, and new graduates filling in time waiting for a better opportunity in the city. Apparently, this guy from Egypt was a great doctor in his homeland, and could have been an excellent doctor in Canada. The system didn’t work for him as a doctor, but as an allied professional.
  13. Jonathan Whatley

    Jonathan Whatley Well-Known Member

    You probably mean radiographer (medical radiation technologist)? Simplifying a little, a radiographer is an allied health professional who administers medical imaging or radiation therapy, a radiologist is a specialist physician who interprets medical imaging or plans radiation therapy. There have been moves to empower advanced practice radiographers to do more that overlaps with traditional work of radiologists, like the creation in the U.S. of the Registered Radiologist Assistant.
    Phdtobe likes this.
  14. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    I don't know, but I suppose the same question can be asked of the non-licensed Executive JD, or other types of degrees where people would normally expect one to be licensed and practicing. I just think of all the JD's who never passed the bar. I figure there has to be quite a few MDs out there who never passed Step 3 to get licensed.

    Over the years I have seen job postings for unlicensed Physicians and Lawyers. Some time ago I worked for a company that had an executive level drug consultant who was a PharmD with an inactive license. I make no claims on the prevalence of these positions, I just point out that they are out there.
  15. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    You might be talking about the College of Medicine in St. Lucia that has offices here in the U.S. in Montana. They along with IUHS are on Indiana's list of disapproved Medical Schools for no other reasons than offering online education. I have to say, I am surprised at New York, but I guess anything is possible after NYU's free tuition announcement. Heh.

    For IUHS' new program pushes, what other choice do they have? If they were to strictly ride out the MD program to 2023 and not explore other avenues they may not have a program or a school to teach it from in 2024, so setting up some fallbacks is the only choice if they want a way to keep operating if none of this goes their way. Personally, if I were considering a program like this, I would wait it out until the dust settles. I have strong reservations that IUHS can lobby and grease enough American palms to gain favor in the states that are closing in on adopting California's legal position. I say that because there are tougher lobbyists stateside trying to get a lot of these offshore schools shut down somehow-some way so the battle for IUHS may be insurmountable at this point.

    My last take is, I think the tuition is way too high. Think about it, the first two years are online on a server with very low volume since there are so few students enrolled compared to even some of the smallest schools on the planet, then you have to pay out of pocket for clerkships that they don't control, and then clinicals that they don't control. They use DxR, so much of their own work is practically automated except for reading reports from the few students they enroll. The argument has probably been made that they charge higher because they have a smaller student base, but hey, 80K is still 80K. I understand that's cheaper than the typical medical school, much cheaper, but that doesn't change anything in my eyes, and if a person fails to get a residency match that 80K is going to wind up feeling like 800K.

    So yeah, if I were someone considering this and I didn't have a ton of transfer credit that could accelerate me to the steps, I would wait. It's going to take 4 years from now coming in fresh to finish and the last thing a person would want at the end of all of that work is finding out the bottom fell out of the whole program due to legal matters there or stateside and now you have an MD that you can never get a license for.
  16. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    I don’t remember his exact title, but from our private conversation he was unable to practice as an MD in Canada so he studied for a new medical profession. Ironically, his new studies made his a better doctor albeit unable to practice as a physician.
  17. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Robert Jarvik never completed a residency and has therefore never held a medical license.

    A number of law professors are not only not licensed but ineligible for licensing. You have quite a few with foreign law degrees who would need to jump through some hoops, if it is possible at all, to sit for the bar. As bar affiliation isn't required to teach at a law school, however, it's not a big deal for many of them.

    The non-bar admitted JD is in a position not unlike an MBA. They have an advanced degree which, ideally, provides them with more insight into an aspect of their work in such a way that it makes them valuable to a company. That's all. Our risk manager knows quite a bit about insurance law despite not being a lawyer. At certain levels, in certain fields you're just expected to know a bit about law. Doesn't mean you need to be a lawyer. But, in those instances, having a law degree would undoubtedly be seen as a positive thing. At least as positive as an MBA, if not more. Whether that modest boost to one's career justifies earning a JD is another story entirely.\

    Since we're talking lawyers, I'm reminded of the Latin phrase res ipsa loquitur, "the thing speaks for itself."

    When looking at a person's career, the career generally speaks for itself. Robert Jarvik is clearly not someone who just couldn't pass some exams and became a medical researcher because he failed at being a doctor. His career speaks for itself. If you're working as a bank teller with a JD then no matter how you try to spin it as "wanting finance experience," your career speaks for itself. If Robert Jarvik were working full time as a medical scribe we would have a different perception of him and his career.

    As you rise through executive ranks, your earnings begin to eclipse what you could ever hope to make as a practitioner. That's very different from getting a job doing whatever because you couldn't get a license or no one would hire you because your professional school had a bad reputation.
  18. copper

    copper Active Member

    Keep it simple! If you want to practice medicine in the US, then go to a US medical school. If you want an MD or DO for other than practicing medicine, you are wasting a lot of time and money.... probably should get a PhD. As far as online medical school, you are not only a foreign medical graduate but you have the added stigma of an online medical education. Very risky! Might get an adjunct faculty position teaching biology at the local community college or perhaps it would work getting a physician position in some third world, war torn country
    Last edited: May 20, 2019
  19. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    80K is a lot of money to take a chance with if you're starting off from scratch. I could better understand the risk if one were coming in with a good deal to transfer to take advantage of their newly liberal transfer policy, but 2019 is probably the most uncertain time to try something like this knowing that in 2023 everything could invalidate the system. Still, it is something interesting.

    I remember reading about an MD program in Dominica that was made specifically for non-practice at a very low price and I thought, hey sounds cool. The place was/is called "Blue Marble University". But then I checked out the website and it looked like too much of a joke to take seriously, and then on their accreditation page it goes into the classic mill-speech of "Accreditation is voluntary..." and you know the rest, smh.

    If a person really searched they could find open enrollment courses that match the typical medical school curriculum. For instance, I took out about 15 minutes once and found courses like Clinical Medicine, Immunology, Histology, and Gross Anatomy all with open enrollment from a number of different schools online. Might be rough finding a medical school who will accept the courses if one ever tried to transfer them in, but if someone wanted to do their own version of what IUHS offers strictly for the knowledge they could do it for much cheaper and at their own pace.
  20. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    Shame a person can't just take those courses individually and then petition to take the USMLE tests. Of course, even if you could, you still would have an impossible time finding anyone to give you a residency in the United States, and even in the off-chance you did get a residency I'd imagine getting a license to practice would be impossible.

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