Fikret Bildik, Mehmet Ali Aslaner, Isa Kiliçaslan, Ayfer Keles, Sakir Hakan Aksu, Merve Yazla, Mehmet Akif Karamercan, Ahmet Demircan

Department of Emergency Medicine, Gazi University School of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey

Keywords: Career choice, emergency medicine, medical student


INTRODUCTION: The long-term trends of medical students’ choice for emergency medicine (EM) in Turkey are unclear. With this background, we aimed to determine the change in the rate of EM preferences of students over the years.

METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study originated from 6th-year medical students’ feedback forms, to examine trends of EM carrier preferences between 2005 and 2018 in a tertiary care academic emergency department. There are two main questions containing “would you choose EM as a specialty?” and “why?” as open-ended questions in the form. The answers to the open-ended question were classified as six main factors, which were perception of work, lifestyle, nature of work, personal job preference, mentorship/department experiences, and income.

RESULTS: During the study, 2957 forms (80.6% of 3668) were completed by 6th-year medical students. Of the students, 26.5% (n = 784) responded “yes” to the question, which was “would you choose EM as a specialty?,” 6.1% (n = 181) responded “do not know,” and 67.4% (n = 1992) responded “no.” In 2005, 15% of students stated that they would choose EM, while this rate increased to 29% in 2018 (χ2: 9.67; P trend = 0.003). Perception of work was the most common reason for “yes” (46.3%), “no” (46%), and “do not know” answers.

CONCLUSION: The rate of EM choice of medical students doubled during the study, and approximately one in three students stated that they could choose EM as their future career in the past year. Perception of work was the main factor for choosing or rejecting to EM.

How to cite this article: Bildik F, Aslaner MA, Kilicaslan I, Keles A, Aksu SH, Yazla M, et al. Trends in medical students' career choice of emergency medicine: A 14-year study. Turk J Emerg Med 2020;20:75-80.

Ethics Committee Approval

The study was approved by the Gazi University Institutional Ethics Review Board with number 26.07.2019/08.

Author Contributions

F.B. and M.A.A. designed, performed analysis and wrote the manuscript. Ş.H.A. and M.Y. contributed towards study design, and data collection. A.K., İ.K., M.A.K., and A.D. provided critical feedback and reviewed the entire article.

Conflict of Interest

None declared.

Financial Disclosure

None declared.