In the obstetrics and gynecology medical field, professionals can take a few different routes to achieve a career. If exploring the differences between midwives and OB-GYNs leaves you wondering, “What credentials do you need to be an OB-GYN?” read on to learn more.
The first credential that a prospective OB-GYN will need to acquire is a bachelor’s degree. A bachelor’s degree is often a stepping stone toward medical school. Most medical schools will accept a range of majors, though they often look for an academic background in science, math, and English courses.
Once you’ve received your bachelor’s degree, you’ll need to take the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) to get into medical school. You can find many MCAT preparation courses and study groups to prepare you for this cognitive abilities and reasoning test.
After your bachelor’s, you’ll strive for a medical degree from an accredited medical school. During the first two years of your program, you’ll most likely home in on cell biology, immunology, anatomy, and more.
The third and fourth years of medical schooling typically focus on hands-on practice for students. Students will participate in clinical rotations, allowing them to work with patients under the presence of a licensed physician. Students can explore various practices during their clinical rotations, such as obstetrics and gynecology.
Upon completion of medical school, your state may require you to take the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) before starting a residency. Once you begin your residency, you’ll gain greater in-depth experience in the specialty of your choosing.
Finding a residency
You can streamline your residency program search by utilizing the National Resident Matching Program. You can expect a four-year residency program for obstetrics and gynecology.
Acquiring a License
You must acquire a license from your state’s medical board before you begin your practice in obstetrics and gynecology or any medical field for that matter. Check your state’s licensing process to ensure you have all the materials necessary for the process. A few common steps in the process of obtaining a license include:
- Passing the USMLE
- Providing proof of education
- Assembling proof of training
The American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ABOG) is a common route of certification for obstetrician-gynecologists. OB-GYNs can seek additional certifications for specialty fields, such as fertility, oncology, and reconstructive surgery.
Doctors who have already acquired the credentials you need to be an OB-GYN may seek further training through a three-year fellowship. Fellowships are optional yet still popular among doctors, as they allow medical professionals to research and hone their subspecialty.
Maintain Standing With Continuing Education
All OB-GYNs upkeep their education to maintain their licenses. Different specialties have different continuing education requirements, which you can find with the American Board of Medical Specialties or ABOG.