Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors
Filter by Categories
15th National Conference of the IAOMFP, Chennai, 2006
Abstracts from current literature
Acne in India: Guidelines for management - IAA Consensus Document
Art & Psychiatry
Association Activities
Association Notes
Award Article
Book Review
Brief Report
Case Analysis
Case Letter
Case Letters
Case Notes
Case Report
Case Reports
Clinical and Laboratory Investigations
Clinical Article
Clinical Studies
Clinical Study
Conference Oration
Conference Summary
Continuing Medical Education
Cosmetic Dermatology
Current Best Evidence
Current Issue
Current View
Derma Quest
Dermato Surgery
Dermatosurgery Specials
Dispensing Pearl
Do you know?
Drug Dialogues
Editor Speaks
Editorial Remarks
Editorial Report
Editorial Report - 2007
Editorial report for 2004-2005
Fourth All India Conference Programme
From Our Book Shelf
From the Desk of Chief Editor
Get Set for Net
Get set for the net
Guest Article
Guest Editorial
How I Manage?
IADVL Announcement
IADVL Announcements
IJDVL Awards
IJDVL Awards 2018
IJDVL Awards 2019
IJDVL Awards 2020
IJDVL International Awards 2018
Images in Clinical Practice
In Memorium
Inaugural Address
Knowledge From World Contemporaries
Leprosy Section
Letter in Response to Previous Publication
Letter to Editor
Letter to the Editor
Letter to the Editor - Case Letter
Letter to the Editor - Letter in Response to Published Article
Letter to the Editor - Observation Letter
Letter to the Editor - Study Letter
Letter to the Editor - Therapy Letter
Letter to the Editor: Articles in Response to Previously Published Articles
Letters in Response to Previous Publication
Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor - Letter in Response to Previously Published Articles
Letters to the Editor: Case Letters
Letters to the Editor: Letters in Response to Previously Published Articles
Medicolegal Window
Miscellaneous Letter
Net Case
Net case report
Net Image
Net Letter
Net Quiz
Net Study
New Preparations
News & Views
Observation Letter
Observation Letters
Original Article
Original Contributions
Pattern of Skin Diseases
Pediatric Dermatology
Pediatric Rounds
Presedential Address
Presidential Address
Presidents Remarks
Report of chief editor
Report of Hon : Treasurer IADVL
Report of Hon. General Secretary IADVL
Research Methdology
Research Methodology
Resident page
Resident's Page
Resident’s Page
Residents' Corner
Residents' Corner
Residents' Page
Review Article
Review Articles
Reviewers 2022
Revision Corner
Self Assessment Programme
Seminar: Chronic Arsenicosis in India
Seminar: HIV Infection
Short Communication
Short Communications
Short Report
Special Article
Specialty Interface
Study Letter
Study Letters
Symposium - Contact Dermatitis
Symposium - Lasers
Symposium - Pediatric Dermatoses
Symposium - Psoriasis
Symposium - Vesicobullous Disorders
Symposium Aesthetic Surgery
Symposium Dermatopathology
Symposium-Hair Disorders
Symposium-Nails Part I
Symposium-Nails-Part II
Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses
Systematic Reviews and Meta-analysis
Therapeutic Guideline-IADVL
Therapeutic Guidelines
Therapeutic Guidelines - IADVL
Therapy Letter
Therapy Letters
View Point
What’s new in Dermatology
View/Download PDF

Translate this page into:

88 (
); 148-149

On being a freshly passed dermatologist in the time of pandemic

Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India
Corresponding author: Dr. Atreyo Chakraborty, Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India.
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-Share Alike 4.0 License, which allows others to remix, tweak, and build upon the work non-commercially, as long as the author is credited and the new creations are licensed under the identical terms.

How to cite this article: Chakraborty A. On being a freshly passed dermatologist in the time of pandemic. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol 2022;88:148-9.

I sat one morning in my balcony with my recently issued MD marksheet, hardly two weeks old, in my hand. The precious document proudly declared: “Passed MD with Distinction in Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy.” I could not but help wonder what sort of future awaited me. After all, dermatology is a much coveted and sought-after discipline, as one is told at the start of the postgraduate course.

As I flipped through the pages of the newspaper and navigated through the job advertising websites, I was rather excited to see plenty of advertisements and opportunities for medical professionals, particularly in premier institutes and hospitals throughout India, with most of them offering handsome emoluments at the first glance. Sadly, on looking at them in greater details, I realized that most of the vacancies are not for dermatologists; rather they are reserved for other disciplines such as medicine, surgery, anaesthesiology and pulmonology. For the very few institutes that do have a vacancy for a dermatologist (which are usually numbered as if in binary numerals – either 0 or 1), the competition is cut-throat, to say the least. For example, the author is aware of 17 postgraduates applying for a single seat in a premier institute of North India.

To add to the already complicated picture, most private practice clinics and hospitals demand good hands-on experience in the field of cosmetology, such as familiarity with lasers, hyfrecators and other sophisticated devices. Most of these are beyond the curriculum of many Indian colleges, as a result of which, the newly passed postgraduate is forced to spend a considerable amount of time learning these vital soft skills before they can confidently engage in private practice. In one way or the other, fellowships in these fields have become mandatory, though opportunities for these are again, limited. Some of these courses may even burn a hole in one’s pocket. Starting a private clinic with an expensive setup is also beyond the affordability of most freshly passed postgraduates.

The current pandemic situation has aggravated the problem more: Most vacancies that had once existed in dermatology before the pandemic have been siphoned away to cater to the disciplines greater in need during the pandemic. The author’s experience (also shared by other colleagues) is that dermatology is usually regarded as an “optional” or “ancillary” subject by many clinicians in other disciplines. The argument offered is that dermatology patients are usually not sick enough to justify a very important status for the subject. While this may be true to a limited extent, life-threatening dermatological emergencies are frequently encountered in many hospitals irrespective of the situation of COVID pandemic. There are many dermatoses that have been assuming epidemic proportions in India (e.g., dermatophytosis1), partly due to dearth of well-qualified dermatologists. The pandemic with shutdown of dermatological services in many places has only aggravated the problem.

Another point to ponder is that the present curriculum of MD which although makes two publications mandatory, does not offer enough chances to hone one’s writing skills, as a result of which, many newly passed postgraduates face difficulty in publishing academic papers. Publishing papers can put one in an advantageous position in job hunting.2 Organising frequent workshops at the postgraduate level on scientific writing, could encourage postgraduates to contribute more to the existing literature beyond the two mandatory publications, and above all, inculcate a habit of publishing which could offer a distinct advantage in terms of employment.

Creating more seats at senior residency level for dermatologists, training them in the tidbits of cosmetology, with inclusion of cosmetology in the postgraduate syllabus and sensitising physicians from other disciplines about the vital role dermatologists play in patient care is the way forward. More importantly, freshly passed dermatologists can be offered training and employed on emergency basis for the management of the pandemic situation, as our recent experience in the country suggests. Only then will unemployment among freshly passed dermatology postgraduates significantly decrease.

The mobile in my hand beeped. It was a message from one of my colleagues from another discipline in high demand in the current scenario. He had just got an exciting offer from one of the most prestigious institutes of North India. I longingly looked at the distant mountains from the window of my room. The mist in the Himalayas was slowly clearing up, and the bright sun was slowly rising above the horizon, clearing the darkness on its way. A big fish jumped out of the water in the Ganges, making a full circle before diving back, as I walked back to my daily chores, confident of landing a job as soon as possible.

(The author is a recently passed postgraduate from AIIMS, Rishikesh)

Declaration of patient consent

Patient’s consent not required as there are no patients in this study.

Financial support and sponsorship


Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.


  1. , , , , , , et al. The unprecedented epidemic-like scenario of dermatophytosis in India: I. Epidemiology, risk factors and clinical features. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2021;87:154-75.
    [CrossRef] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]
  2. . Making the transition from thesis to published paper: A supervisor's note to her student. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2015;81:447-50.
    [CrossRef] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]

Fulltext Views

PDF downloads
View/Download PDF
Download Citations
Show Sections