A psychiatrist is a doctor who looks after patients with mental health problems such as anxiety, depression and schizophrenia. As a psychiatrist, you'll work in a team of health and social care professionals to assess, diagnose and treat patients who have been referred to you.
The Skills Required
To become a psychiatrist you need:
- an interest in how people think and feel
- excellent listening and communication skills
- the ability to put people at ease and inspire trust and confidence
- good investigative skills
- an interest and ability in science and medicine
- the ability to work under pressure and make well-judged decisions
- leadership and management skills
- the ability to work well in a team
- a keen interest in your specialist field and a willingness to keep your skills up to date.
To become a psychiatrist you need to have completed:
- a 5-year degree in medicine, recognised by the General Medical Council (GMC)
- a 2-year foundation programme of general training
- a 6-year specialist training programme in psychiatry.
To do a degree in medicine you'll usually need at least 5 GCSEs (A-C) including English, maths and science, plus 3 A levels at grades AAB in subjects such as chemistry, biology and either physics or maths. Check the GMC website for a list of degree courses.