Second attempt for a MIR square

Jose Alexandre Betancor.

Jose Alexandre Betancor is one of the 13,059 candidates who will appear on January 29 at the MIR 2022. However, unlike many of them, the Medicine graduate knows well what it is to face an exam of these characteristics after a demanding preparation. “I’m a repeater. It is the second time that I appear”, explains the Canarian doctor to Medical Writing, where he narrates the ‘nightmare’ that he lived in the first preparation. “The psychological factor was the hardest thing to deal with. My trust was completely broken”, he regrets, assuring that he faces this second assault with confidence and optimism: “I will be a pediatrician yes or yes. If not this year, I’ll keep trying.”

Betancor, who in the previous call failed to secure a place in Pediatrics, decided to return to the Canary Islands to prepare for the exercise for the second time and prioritize mental health. Some studies that, in addition, he has made compatible with his work in Primary Care, although he has decided to ‘freeze’ these last few weeks to focus exclusively on the exam. “The demand for care has risen a lot in recent weeks due to covid and it has been really hard,” he adds.

Last weeks before MIR 2022

In these last weeks before the ‘big day’, the applicant claims to be following the instructions of the academy, although modifying them to his own circumstances. “I am prioritizing test, questions and video-classes, emphasizing the subjects that I have been more ‘weak’ and that may fall in the exam. In addition, I am dedicating more time to myself and respecting the breaks”, he explains.

Betancor feels lucky to be able to enjoy those little moments of leisure, since, as he explains to this medium, he lives in the countryside, “practically isolated”, without fear of contagion. However, he assures that, in recent weeks, he was terrified of the infection in the hospital. “I was afraid of getting infected and throwing away a year’s work or losing the last weeks of preparation,” he stresses, noting that, if he lived in another environment, he would have opted for isolation, “as many other applicants are doing.” Something that, according to the applicant, is generating “insecurity” in colleagues: “It is an added anxiety”.

And it is that, according to the covid instructions issued by the Ministry of Health, access to the Faculties will not be allowed to applicants with the presence of any symptom of Covid-19; people diagnosed with coronavirus who have not completed the period of home isolation; nor those who are in quarantine for being close contact. On this issue, the ministerial body does not consider an alternative for those candidates who cannot present themselves next January 29. “They should offer options”criticizes the doctor.

“The MIR has a great psychological component”

The candidate remembers that, in the first preparation, he went into a loop and even thought about throwing in the towel. “I had the feeling of going against the current. I didn’t have time to finish what the academy marked and what I studied I didn’t study well enough because I tried to meet the schedule. I tried to cover everything and it just overwhelmed me”, he highlights, noting that, although “perhaps” he is covering less of the agenda in this second routine, he is studying “with better quality”.

“In the first preparation, which I carried out in Oviedo, my confidence was completely broken. I thought that it was useless for Medicine and that I had made a mistake in not obtaining the expected results. Now, facing patients and continuing to train on my own has helped me grow and lose my fear”, he says, acknowledging that he has needed professional help.

The candidate assures that the MIR has a “strong psychological component”, so he sends a message of encouragement to all the applicants who may go through the same situation. “From the Faculty, everything revolves around the MIR. It seems that there is no life after the MIR and that if you fail, you have nothing. This year I have verified that it is quite the opposite: I have not stopped working and it has helped me rebuild that lost confidence”. I have enjoyed the preparation. In fact, he explains that he has been able to apply many of the concepts learned in the long days of study in consultation, which has been “enriching”: “I’m enjoying this second preparation”.

“It’s okay if you fail that day. It’s hard and it hurts, but it’s better to lose a year and do what you really like than to condemn yourself to do something you don’t like to avoid going through the same process”, concludes the doctor, who faces the exam with optimism, although recognizes that he ‘obsesses the open agenda‘: “You know that they can ask you anything and that generates a lot of uncertainty. The last MIR have been little discriminatory, with questions that have been left to chance”.

Although it may contain statements, data or notes from health institutions or professionals, the information contained in Medical Writing is edited and prepared by journalists. We recommend the reader that any questions related to health be consulted with a health professional.

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