MD/PhD programs are specifically designed for those who want to become research physicians, also known as physician-scientists. Graduates of MD/PhD programs often go on to become faculty members at medical schools, universities, and research institutes such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH). MD/PhD candidates are being prepared for careers in which they will spend most of their time doing research in addition to caring for patients. Therefore, it is critical that applicants have a passion for doing both — most MD/PhD graduates feel strongly that they would not be fulfilled by only pursuing medicine or only pursuing science.
Some MD/PhD programs are classified as Medical Scientist Training Programs (MSTP). These programs recieve financial support from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), a branch of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Approximately 45 of the 118 MD/PhD programs in the US are classified as MSTP.
MD/PhD programs are typically 8 years in length (although some can be completed in 7 years). Most programs follow a 2+4+2 format: students complete the first two years of medical school, followed by four years of graduate school, and then complete the final two years of medical school.
In addition to providing students with substantial research experience, the benefit of pursuing an MD/PhD is that they are fully funded. This means that accepted students are provided a tuition waiver throughout the entirety of the program, combined with a competitive stipend.
MD/PhD programs in Georgia:
MD/MPH are dual-degree programs in which students receive both a medical degree and a Master of Public Health. These programs are designed to prepare students to work as physicians in the public health field, enabling them to diagnose health problems and risk factors of individuals and communities.
MD/MPH programs can usually completed within five years (4-years of medical school and 1-year of graduate study in public health).
MD/MPH programs in Georgia:
Many students interested in research but apprehensive of completing an eight-year program (like the MD/PhD) elect to pursue MD/MS degree programs. MD/MS program are unique in that they typically vary from institution to institution. For instance, the University of Virginia offers a dual MD/MS in Clinical Research, designed to provide graduate professional training in quantitative and qualitative research methodologies and translational and community-based research strategies. Emory University offers a dual MD/MA in Bioethics program designed to prepare students from the onset of their medical careers to identify, address, and assess ethical issues as they appear in clinical practice.
MD/MS (or MA) programs in Georgia:
Though less common compared with other dual-degree programs, MD/MBA programs are becoming increasingly popular. These programs are designed to provide physicians with the knowledge to run their own practice or hold a management position at a hospital, pharmaceutical company, insurance company or biotech company.
MD/MBA programs are designed for completion within five years (4-years of medical school and 1-year of graduate study in business).
Also, most students interested in a MD/MBA degree do not possess the average five years of work experience of a typical MBA candidate. Many students proceed to medical school directly from their undergraduate program. However, this does not mean that work experience should not be addressed in your application.
MD/MPH programs in Georgia:
The MD/JD program allows students to obtain both degrees in medicine and law. The law curriculum prepares medical students for careers in health sector law, leadership and policy. It also prepares future physicians for legal aspects of running a private medical practice or heading a group practice.
MD/JD programs are designed for completion within six years.
There no combined MD/JD programs currently offered in the state of Georgia.