Vol VIII, Issue 3 Date of Publication: July 02, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.20529/IJME.2022.070

, PDF Downloads:

The Covid-19 effect on medical students’ perceptions of their profession: A mixed methods study from South India

Manjulika Vaz
Sumithra S
Reshma Ravindra
Suhas Chandran
Sandhya Ramachandra
Olinda Timms
Covid-19 has devastated human lives and stretched the limits of the medical profession and health systems. Using the mixed methods of online survey and online focus group discussions, we assessed how medical students and interns of two medical colleges in South India viewed the profession they had chosen. Of the 900 participants, 571(63.4%) had a positive perception of the medical profession, 77(8.6%) a negative perception and 252(28%) were undecided. The year of study in medical school was significantly associated with their perception of the medical profession, with interns more likely to have a negative perception (p<0.001). An overwhelming 823(91.4%) participants remained confident of their career choice, but a higher proportion of interns were less confident or regretful about their choice of profession compared to first to fourth year students (p<0.001). Most participants experienced moral distress; they acknowledged a duty to care but were troubled by personal risk, inadequate protection, and limited resources. Gaps were identified in medical and ethics training particularly regarding uncertainties and coping with deficiencies of the health system as encountered in the pandemic. The essential role played by doctors with its required competence, care and ethics cannot be assumed or expected without investment in the making of the future doctor through more socially embedded medical education imparting the skills of understanding the public, responding to them and being the advocate for their equitable and optimal care. An ethics of responsiveness emerges as important for healthcare, also for medical education in preparation for future health crises.

Copyright and license
©Indian Journal of Medical Ethics 2022: Open Access and Distributed under the Creative Commons license ( CC BY-NC-ND 4.0),
which permits only non-commercial and non-modified sharing in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.

Full Text


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Please restrict your comment preferably to 800 words
Comments are moderated. Approval can take up to 48 hours.

Help IJME keep its content free. You can support us from as little as Rs. 500 Make a Donation