If you were speaking to a medstudent interested in pursuing a career in A/I, why would you tell them to choose it?

If you were speaking to a medical student who was interested in pursuing a career in A/I, why would you tell him or her to choose it?

Anne-Marie A. Irani, MD, FAAAAI answers:

The field of allergy and immunology allows the practitioner to apply a comprehensive approach to medical care as it is based on an understanding of immune mechanisms and therefore goes beyond caring for a particular organ system.

For example, a patient with asthma, allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis and eosinophilic esophagitis could be cared for by a team consisting of a pulmonologist, ear, nose and throat practitioner, dermatologist and gastroenterologist, or the patient could receive comprehensive care from an allergist/immunologist.

The practice of allergy/immunology is grounded on an increasing amount of evidence-based recommendations and practice parameters, which move the field from an art to more of a science. The demand for specialists in our field will continue to increase as new immune-mediated disease entities are described and new biologic therapies are developed, resulting in expansion of our scope of practice.

The 2012 ACAAI President provides a considerably more guarded perspective for the future of the specialty here: Impressions from the annual meeting of the allergy/immunology fellowship program directors http://bit.ly/WMUopo

Comments from Twitter:

Dr. Ellis @DrAnneEllis: Grateful patients that you more often than not make a huge improvement in their quality of life... in Canada, lots of job prospects for most, a great work-life balance; great variety of patient problems; and "one stop shopping" as your blogger mentions.


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