Frum Doctors

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  • #1317411

    i love coffe
    Participant

    I want to apologize first because I do not know what it looks like for those who want to be doctors but live a frum life, so I have a couple of questions.
    Is there such a thing as frum/Yeshivish doctors? Can one actually go to med school and still make time to learn Torah (at least 2 hours a day), make it to minyan and daven three times a day?
    What does it look like when they need to enter an internship program and live as a frum Jew at the same time? Are there certain areas where on has to compromise on? What is their lifestyle like?
    Any input and personal experiences would be helpful. Thank you!

    #1317439

    Meno
    Participant

    I’ve never heard of a Jewish person becoming a doctor.

    Most Jews become FedEx delivery people or gas station attendants.

    Occasionally you’ll find a Jewish accountant.

    #1317440

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    “Is there such a thing as frum/Yeshivish doctors?”

    I like to think so. And I definitely know of many frum doctors,

    ” Can one actually go to med school and still make time to learn Torah (at least 2 hours a day),”
    Yes though 2 hours every day is hard (certainly day before final that takes real motivation but certainly not impossible and not limited to medicine)

    make it to minyan and daven three times a day?
    minyan – impossible to be done everyday especially as a student and trainee
    davening – can be done

    “What does it look like when they need to enter an internship program and live as a frum Jew at the same time? Are there certain areas where on has to compromise on? ”

    Minyan is a big one, davening in general is hard and especially as a student have to rely on bedieveds like Shacharis before neitz. Tefilin before misheyakir (R’ Moshe allows this but not lecatchila and not all agree)
    I dont see how it is possible to avoid shaking women’s hands (there are mekilim but as is well known There are those who hold its yeharog Ve’al yaavor so I suppose that too is a compromise.)
    though none of these are limited to medicine per se.

    “What is their lifestyle like?”
    Too vague.

    Note the above is a generalization depends on stage of training and specialty matters as well

    #1317474

    yytz
    Participant

    There are many frum doctors. I suggest asking around and finding some to talk to so you can find out first hand. Being a doctor is a very demanding profession. There would probably be some times during medical school and residency when there’s no way you would have time to learn for 2 hours a day. Many frum doctors end up having to work on Shabbos and Yom Tov as part of their training (yes, rabbonim give hetarim for this.) So the lifestyle is difficult, as doctors work longer hours with more stress than probably any other major profession. The training takes many years, you work very long hours, and get little sleep, but of course are paid a lot. However, you can try to choose a specialty which is more compatible with a frum life (some specialties make it easier to get days off or work fewer hours.)

    #1317475

    BC GIft of Life
    Participant

    Finding two hours a day to learn is a challenge for many people in many professions. As for the rest of your concerns, if there is a will there is a way.

    #1317479

    BC GIft of Life
    Participant
    #1317489

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    “What does it look like when they need to enter an internship program and live as a frum Jew at the same time? Are there certain areas where on has to compromise on? ”

    Shaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaboooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooosssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    #1317542

    ColumbiaGrad17
    Participant

    I became a communist at Columbia, so likely not. (:

    #1317562

    Lightbrite
    Participant

    My Rabbi’s son is in medical school now and he is extremely committed to observing Torah and honoring Hashem

    #1317631

    Lightbrite
    Participant

    Wasn’t Rambam a doctor? Or am I thinking about Rashi?

    #1317718

    DovidBT
    Participant

    Rambam was a doctor. But that was in the 12th century, and practicing medicine was probably a lot simpler then.

    #1317722

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    Most frum doctors I know carry cell phones on shabbos and many times use them

    #1317725

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    I have a few acquaintances who are frum doctors who, as far as I know, don’t carry phones with them.

    They have arrangements with other doctors to cover them on Shabbos and Yom Tov.

    #1317729

    izzyg
    Participant

    for dovid bt:
    The Rambam left notes on his life as a doctor whIch I read many years ago. He was kept VERY busy by the sultan and family, and the many who came to be treated by him.
    after I rEad that report, I appreCiated the Rambam so much more when I thought about all the Torah he managed to record. HE WAS A SUPERNATURAL GENIUS !!!

    #1317728

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    I left Shabbos out of my post since there is a lot of variability.

    In MEd school Shabbos is generaly not an issue (though I have heard of some who have been given a hard time)
    In residency depending on the specialty there are Shomer shabbos positions though these are dwindling for a variety of reasons

    Post Residency it is more up to the individual (though as has been recurring these also depends on specialty)

    #1317747

    bk613
    Participant

    There are MANY potential issues that WILL arise during school. The only way to successfully get through it is by choosing a Rav while you are still in undergrad who will guide through all of the obstacles.

    #1317759

    yitzchokm
    Participant

    Well said, bk613
    That’s sums it up.

    OP
    If you looking for actual advice, I advise you to find your local Orthodox doctor and ask him how he did it/what obstacles he faced. If he’s frum today I’d imagine he’d be happy to discuss it with you.
    I assume you understand that it’s difficult based in your questioning. I’m not a doctor, but some of my friends are, and I can’t say their level of frumkite was left unscathed throughout their medical education career.
    Of my friends, the only one that stayed true to his upbringing was the one who had a very close relationship with his Ruv.

    #1317772

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    The bottom line is that if you become a doctor, you will probably no longer keep shabbos. Whether that is muttar or not, you can ask your rabbi. But it’s not shabbos.

    And no, it is way different from for example being in hatzala where you regularly do melacha on shabbos for specific pikuach nefesh situations. Doctors treat shabbos like any other day.

    As the gemara says, they go to gehenom.

    #1317792

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    Ok PBA I’ll bite.

    How is it different than hatzola, The Hatzola guy doesnt carry his radio for any “specific pikuach nefesh situation”? He carries it in case he gets called (and he often/always does)

    “Doctors treat shabbos like any other day.”
    some do some dont.

    “As the gemara says, they go to gehenom.”
    the Gemara also says hamechane shem ra lechavero goes to gehinom, so we can learn bechavrusa.
    Maybe the Rambam can give us shiur

    #1317825

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Don’t worry, he wasn’t talking about you. It only says that good doctors go to gehenom. 😉

    #1317837

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Not to take away from DY’s post.

    Hatzalah guys wear a radio, and go to shul, and daven, and go home, and eat a seudah (and yell at their kids and swill scotch and fall asleep on couch). Albeit perhaps also run out on a few calls.

    Doctors put on their work clothes, go to their regular job. While their kids sit at home and mother yells at them.

    I posit that choice A is shabbos, and choice B is not.

    Accountants keep shabbos. Lawyers keep shabbos. Mechanics keep shabbos. Laundry chute sweepers keep shabbos. Elephant trainers keep shabbos. All jobs that are 7 days a week you can keep shabbos and you just don’t do the shabbos shift. Except doctors don’t keep shabbos.

    #1317847

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    Boy, I sure hope you never need a doctor.

    #1317853

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    On second thought, you wouldn’t even need a doctor. Just a vet.

    #1317854

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    PBA
    “Doctors put on their work clothes, go to their regular job. While their kids sit at home and mother yells at them.”

    Thats true for Some. (though exceedingly rare that it would be every week)
    Others carry a phone answer emergent/urgent questions
    Others carry a phone answer urgent emergent questions and occasionally go to the hospital if/wwhen their is an emergency (this is the group that is similar hatzola)

    still others dont even carry a phone (see DY’s post)

    Thus your line “Except doctors don’t keep shabbos.” should read “some”

    (as an aside Sadly though some accountants, lawyers, mechanics laundry chute sweepers and Elephant trainers also dont keep shabbos. (granted not as many as doctors ))

    #1317863

    Meno
    Participant

    I’ve never met an elephant trainer who doesn’t keep shabbos

    #1317871

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    On second thought, you wouldn’t even need a doctor. Just a vet.

    Just because popa keeps his kids on a leash doesn’t mean he’s an animal.

    https://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/children-on-leashes#post-1195863

    #1318046

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Amen!

    #1318240

    Health
    Participant

    Ubiq -“Others carry a phone answer emergent/urgent questions
    Others carry a phone answer urgent emergent questions and occasionally go to the hospital”

    You didn’t mention the group that don’t carry their phone & don’t go to the hospital.
    But it doesn’t mean that if s/o comes to their house – they’ll ignore them.

    #1318251

    The little I know
    Participant

    PBA:

    While many of your comments are tongue in cheek, they are usually not offensive or simply untrue. Well, you finally fell into that. I happen to know quite a few frum doctors, and their shmiras Shabbos is as good as anyone else’s. I also know many other people whose shmiras Shabbos leaves much to be desired, and they are counted among Klai Kodesh, and the gamut of professional and non-professional careers. They span the spectrum of Chassidishe and Litvishe groups. Any effort to malign doctors is not just inaccurate, but a blatant attack on some people who are moseir nefesh for Klal Yisroel without compromising on Torah values or halacha. Your comment undeniably crossed into the boundaries of hilchos lashon horah.

    As with any other career, there are challenges to overcome. HKB”H created each of to live a shuman being and face these challenges, not as mal’achim who never encounter such nisyonos. As for percentages how many withstand the nisyonos, there is no data on how they group as different careers. My quite varied experience finds no predominance of any career regarding the nisyonos of Hilchos Shabbos.

    #1318252

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    “You didn’t mention the group that don’t carry their phone & don’t go to the hospital.”

    I did

    #1318257

    Joseph
    Participant

    TLIK, how do you deal with the Gemorah regarding doctors?

    Not that the Gemorah surely doesn’t at least equally apply to lawyers.

    #1318262

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    TLIK, how do you deal with the Gemorah regarding doctors?

    Have you seen any meforshim who relate it to shmiras Shabbos? I haven’t.

    OTOH, to deny that being a doctor generally presents a bigger challenge to shmiras Shabbos than other professions is silly.

    #1318266

    Joseph
    Participant

    My question regarding the Gemorah wasn’t related to Shmiras Shabbos (even though TLIK’s question was.) It was a side question.

    Additionally, the conditions and roadblocks for contemporary physicians in being able to keep Shabbos correctly and appropriately, likely didn’t exist prior to what is known as the era of modern medicine.

    #1318267

    The little I know
    Participant

    Joseph:

    The meforshim on that mishnah in Kiddushin are quite clear. The doctor who believes he is so great that he never needs to consult with another belongs in Gehinnom. The mishnah never maligned an entire profession. In fact, the Gemora (בבא קמא פ”ה א) explains on the posuk תנא דבי רבי ישמעאל ורפא ירפא מכאן שנתנה רשות לרופא לרפאות. You have a hard sell if you want to explain the mishna as knocking the medical field. The latter seems to be the gist of PBA’s comment. Completely inconsistent with the position of Chazal.

    #1318273

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    It’s not lashon hara. It’s called shlechtkeit. Disparaging a noble group of people who don’t have the luxury of poofing away half of Shabbos like PBA because yidden in need of urgent medical help are constantly knocking on their doors. Kefiyas tova and kinah also. And I am not a doctor, BTW, despite my mom de plume.

    #1318275

    Health
    Participant

    Ubiq -“I did”

    You did. I stand corrected.
    But my point was – my second line!

    #1318280

    Joseph
    Participant

    Mr. Nat, what about working on Shabbos for non-yehudim? Or working on Shabbos in areas or hospitals that see few or no frum yidden?

    #1318283

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    This issue has been dealt with extensively in Halacha. And even if you hold it’s an issue, there are ways around it, admittedly with difficulty. Maybe we should also speak about the spiritual pitfalls of other professions, such as working in mixed offices and the like. Or of professions where monetary integrity is constantly being tested. Reminds me of the story of the shochet who came to R Yisroel Salanter and told him he wanted to be a shopkeeper. Why is everyone picking on doctors all of a sudden?

    #1318290

    Gee, maybe because that is what this thread topic is about?

    #1318292

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    Good point. . .I guess I got caught up with the silly comment. . .

    #1318296

    Gadolhadorah
    Participant

    Obviously, there are frum doctors along with frum members of just about every other profession except rodeo cowboys, shochtim in a treife shlachthois and galachim.

    #1318297

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    Point was that, similar to a number of other professions, difficult, but not impossible. Depends on level of commitment. And, let’s not forget, as with everything else, including learning in kollel, you need Yiras Shomayim. Or nothing will work.

    #1318306

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    In which other professions are the challenges of shmiras Shabbos as great as being a physician?

    #1318309

    DovidBT
    Participant

    “In which other professions are the challenges of shmiras Shabbos as great as being a physician?”

    There are lots of jobs in which the employer expects his employees to be available seven days a week.

    #1318311

    Joseph
    Participant

    The issue of how Hatzalah is mechallel Shabbos for non-yehudim/non-frum is a different halachic issue of how a doctor can be mechallel Shabbos for the same reason when going to work as a physician on Shabbos without their being an immediate pekuach nefesh situation requiring it (especially in an area that lacks a community of Shomer Shabbos people that utilize that medical facility where he works on Shabbos.)

    #1318318

    Dr. Nat
    Participant

    Last time I checked, there were 613 Mitzvos.

    #1318327

    Joseph
    Participant

    “There are lots of jobs in which the employer expects his employees to be available seven days a week.”

    And do frum Jews, in those professions, actually work on Shabbos Kodesh?

    #1318329

    yehudayona
    Participant

    Gadolhadorah, don’t forget hit men and pig farmers. I wouldn’t be so sure about rodeo cowboys — the Five Towns branch of Bonei Olam is sponsoring a rodeo.

    MDs, even if they have time to learn Torah two hours a day, probably don’t have time for the CR, so it’s best to stick to something less demanding like a Fedex driver. It has the added advantage of being able to double park and get away with it.

    #1318338

    Joseph
    Participant

    Do doctors have time to go on vacation or go swimming, sightseeing or do any leisurely activities?

    #1318344

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Who are all these ppl saying ridiculous stuff?

    You don’t get to change the facts because you have a friend who is a doctor.

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