I hate cancer. More than 1,500 people die per day from it while 11 million people suffer as they live. That is what makes a hematology / oncology physician so important : to care for these 11 million patients as they traverse the hardest and often very painful times of their life.
Hematology deals with the study of blood and it’s diseases. Oncology is the study of cancers. The two fields are usually taught together with the end result of tailoring your practice towards being a specialist in only one of the two.
The salary is on par with the rest of the specialists. Meaning, it’s a lot.
Straight out of residency, a hematology / oncology physician might make $181,348 but add on a few years of experience and the potential is much more.
Physicians reported earning between $171,293 to $408,963 with the majority making between $213K and $337K. 14% of physicians are reportedly making more than $500,000!
In order to become a heme / onc physician, be prepared to do 6 years of training. First, you must do 3 years of internal medicine residency followed by 3 years of fellowship in hematology / oncology.
Internal medicine residency is easier to get into just because there are so many spots available. Getting into the fellowship is harder. Currently, there are only 134 programs offering about 300 spots. So, the competition will be tough.
A heme / onc physician specializes in the diagnosis, management, and treatment of blood disorders and cancers. Majority of their practice time is in the office. Although, occasionally they can be seen in the hospital rounding when their patients get admitted.
It’s an emotionally wrenching field but you have the opportunity to help so many people. The training is long but the emotional and financial reward is great.