Medical career, not a doctor

(30 Posts)
Doryandnemo Sun 03-Feb-19 18:33:10

Hi, my daughter is considering a vocational medical career. She’s not keen for full-on medicine (and shes not taken higher maths which is required here in Scotland).
However, she’s hoping to end up with A’s and B’s that will get her on a good science type degree.
She’s currently looking at nursing honours degree but all I hear are horror stories of NHS stress and workload and nurses leaving in droves! Looking at the NHS healthcare careers, there’s lots of lesser known medical roles that need at least a 2.1 honours. Physician/ critical care/ cardio/ clinical perfusion etc, they all need a further masters MSci beyond the initial 2.1 degree.
My query is whether an honours nursing degree would fulfill the requirements to go for these further degrees?
As her parent, I’m conscious of a career with prospects and leading to a decent salary. Anyone any experience of these medical jobs?
( she’s aware of the physiotherapist/ radiographer type jobs. She’s not interested in lab/research so that means the likes of immunology/microbiology etc are out. She wants a hands-on, dealing with patients role, currently works in care home on weekend).
Fees/funding not a problem due to late grandparents legacy to her.
Any advice or experience gratefully received.

OP’s posts: |
Doryandnemo Sun 03-Feb-19 18:43:12

Forgot to say, would she be better doing the likes of a physiology /anatomy type degree?

OP’s posts: |
CatToddlerUprising Sun 03-Feb-19 18:44:35

Physicians assistant?

ElspethFlashman Sun 03-Feb-19 18:47:11

Definitely explore clinical physiology. Earn good money, lots of patient contact, regular hours, not a huge amount of stress, lots of positions available. It's usually either respiratory or cardiology I think.

ElspethFlashman Sun 03-Feb-19 18:49:32

There's also a theatre practitioner course. I can't remember the name of it. It's a specialised role in a theatre thats not a nurse and not a doctor. Highly educated and experienced.

Only thing is, most of your patients are unconscious. smile she might not like that.

londonloves Sun 03-Feb-19 18:52:22

There are massive national shortages for theatre practitioners and cardiac and respiratory technicians, I'm not sure if the routes into these but it might be worth going to a local Hospital careers day to chat to the team about the options available. Theatres is fast paced and good fun.

CMOTDibbler Sun 03-Feb-19 18:56:38

I work with a lot of therapeutic radiographers - they are hands on but establish a patient relationship, there is a lot of opportunity for advancement (I know a number of consultant radiographers who have very extended roles, and who do clinical research alongside their job). And largely, the hours are 8-4 or 9-5 (some places do an extended day, but never nights, very rarely weekends)


ElfrideSwancourt Sun 03-Feb-19 19:11:38

What about dentistry?

Oddcat Sun 03-Feb-19 19:17:12

There's a huge shortage of radiographers and I sometimes wonder if people think we just take X-rays .

We don't ! There's the chance to become an advanced practitioner- reporting , CT colonography , Barium swallows/ meals , interventional radiography , cardiac .

CuppaTeaAndAJammieDodger Sun 03-Feb-19 19:22:35

That's an ODP (operating department practitioner) Elspeth. Currently studying to be one myself. Good scope for professional develop and the option of doing an MSC in Surgical Care Practice after qualification which involves performing surgical procedures.

Take a look here for ODP details and here for SGP.

A1B2C Sun 03-Feb-19 19:36:22

How about becoming a clinical pharmacist? It's a rapidly expanding role that is patient facing.

HarryTheSteppenwolf Tue 05-Feb-19 12:42:05

First of all, Higher maths is not required for medicine. This is the kind of thing schools tell students without actually checking. Glasgow & St Andrews require maths or physics. Dundee & Edinburgh don't require either. No English, Welsh or Northern Irish medical school requires maths.

The requirements for specialist postgraduate healthcare degrees vary: some have a preference for qualified nurses, others have a preference for a first degree in something with a large content of anatomy or physiology. It's worth starting off with something like the Health Education England Health Careers web site ( and working backwards to required qualifications. Bear in mind, though, that most of these roles will involve working in the NHS for at least some of the time, which means they will all have similar drawbacks to nursing.

Piggywaspushed Tue 05-Feb-19 18:41:32

What about Occupational Therapy or Speech Therapy? The OT role would develop the skills she has gained in the Care Home setting.

HarryTheSteppenwolf Tue 05-Feb-19 21:37:49

Sorry, I forgot Aberdeen (for medicine). They don't require maths, either.

FixTheBone Tue 05-Feb-19 21:45:39

Biomedical sciences used to be the thing to do, but you could consider pharmacology, clinical psychology, nursing, radiology or even toxicology, clinical genetics, medical engineering.

Doryandnemo Tue 05-Feb-19 22:32:33

Thanks everyone, for your suggestions. She is looking into some of the scientist training roles, didnt realise how many NHS roles there are!
Shes not interested in dentistry and doesn’t think she will get medicene grades ( and she’s well aware of the stress of being a doctor, doesn’t appeal). She should get enough grades for the likes of physiology, that seems to lead to various hands-on roles, albeit with further training (which she’s fine with).
She’s already spoken to an OT (who didn’t recommend, very few jobs, she says, and not much advancement) and a physio. She attended a radiographer talk but at the moment, she only sees it as someone who takes endless x-rays! At 16, it’s hard to imagine what some roles are like.
Thanks again

OP’s posts: |
scissy Wed 06-Feb-19 13:45:25

I have a friend who was a therapeutic radiologist, she used to treat patients with cancer (and the technology/techniques) used were interesting.

There's also audiology she could consider, it's not all testing elderly patients for hearing aids! I have a friend who specialises in pediatrics, including assisting/helping children given cochlea implants helping them to learn how to interpret sound. There can also be research opportunities too if you're so inclined.

IPityThePontipines Wed 06-Feb-19 13:50:33

Nursing sounds the best fit. Yes, there are downsides, but more than any other health job there are so many different areas she could work in. ICU/Theatres/A+E/Community/Higher Education/Research.

If she's working in a care home and enjoying it, she'd have what it takes.

I qualified 16 years ago- no regrets.

HarryTheSteppenwolf Wed 06-Feb-19 16:09:28

I have a friend who was a therapeutic radiologist, she used to treat patients with cancer (and the technology/techniques) used were interesting.

Radiologists are doctors, though. I don't think the OP's daughter wants to study medicine.

YouCanCallMeJodieWho Wed 06-Feb-19 16:14:00

Various careers in NHS.

BackforGood Wed 06-Feb-19 23:56:45

Thanks for starting this thread, and to everyone who has responded..... must show dd tomorrow. She seems to be at the same 'place' as your dd, OP smile

funmummy48 Mon 11-Feb-19 21:03:40

How about a Paramedic Science degree. Paramedics are in great demand & the job is changing all the time.

Basilneedswaterandsun Mon 11-Feb-19 21:08:45

Well I trained as a radiographer and did my post grad in medical ultrasound. Highly varied and rewarding career. I earn good money and I’m proud of what I do. night shifts. There’s a ridiculous amount of work about, so she’ll never be out of work. I’ve done a lot of study but it’s been very worth it for me. I would suggest she speaks to a sonographer.

gingercat02 Mon 11-Feb-19 21:14:50

Dietitian? I'm one, you can work in almost any speciality from critical care to health promotion
Get her to have a look here if she wants to find out more

3out Mon 11-Feb-19 21:27:05

Does she not fancy physiotherapy? Quite a flexible career (no pun intended!), lots of patient contact (again, no pun intended😂) A lot of physio roles are still office (ish) hours, no weekends, no public holidays etc unless on-call.
Very varied, too.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in