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  1. Respiratory medicine

    Doctors working in respiratory medicine diagnose and treat conditions affecting the respiratory system, which includes the nose, throat, larynx, windpipe, lungs and the diaphragm.

    Training usually starts with a five year first degree in medicine. 2 year foundation doctor training, 2 year core medical training and 4 year specialist training (ST3-6). This period of training will include your royal college exams. Length of training can vary according to your circumstances.
    Doctors may work up to 48 hours per week. The working hours may sometimes extend beyond the normal working day to include early mornings, evenings and weekends. You will also need to be on call. The basic salary ranges from £29,384 to £34,012. Once you start your specialty training as a doctor working in respiratory medicine employed by the NHS, you can expect to earn a salary of at least £40,257, which can increase to between £84,559 and £114,003 as a consultant.
    You'll need excellent communication skills to manage a wide range of relationships with colleagues, and patients and their families. You'll be emotionally resilient, have excellent problem-solving and diagnostic skills and work well in teams and under pressure. You'll also be very organised for the benefit of patients.
    There are approximately 1240 consultants working in respiratory medicine in the NHS in England. In 2020, there were 407 applications for 74 specialty training places. You will be able to practise general respiratory medicine or choose a sub-specialist interest such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, lung transplantation, lung cancer, sleep disordered breathing and non-invasive ventilatory support. You’ll also have opportunities to conduct research and teach.
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