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Construction Worker’s Son Landed Top 1 in Licensure Exam

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PLE physician licensure exam result

Is poverty really a hindrance to passing and topping the Physician’ Licensure Exam? Here’s a story of a construction worker’s son landed top 1 in licensure exam.

Jomel Lapides, a University of the Philippines-Manila graduate and topnotcher of the 2020 Physician Licensure Exam (PLE), proves otherwise.

Summary Highlights

  • A working student
  • 2-time medical topnotcher
  • Top 1 in Nursing board exam 2011
  • Top 1 in Physician board exam 2020
  • Father is a construction worker
  • University of the Philippines, Manila
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Having bested about 3,538 medical students during the 2020 PLE, Lapides is no stranger to topping national examinations after ranking as Top 1 not only in the Physician Licensure Exam but also in the Nursing Licensure Exam back in 2011.

Despite coming from humble beginnings, Lapides kept his eyes straight on his goals and even worked as a nurse while studying medicine at University of the Philippines-Manila.

His father, who was a construction worker, also worked as a dressmaker on the side in order to support their family.

Dr. Lapides prayed at least to get into the top 10 and ended up getting the top 1 spot in the 2020 Physician Licensure Exam with an astounding rating of 88.67%.

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During an interview by a news agency, Lapides exclaimed, “sobrang unexpected and surprised at talagang thankful lang talaga kay Lord. I prayed at least makapasok sa top 10. Si Lord po iba yung binigay lagpas-lagpas.”

Lapides has already applied for residency training at Philippine General Hospital to pursue a specialization in ophthalmology.

Physician Licensure Exam 2020

Only 3,538 passed out of the 4,704 aspirants who took the Physician Licensure Exam in November 2020, which was the first licensure exam that was held since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

The result of the said exam was released a week later with a passing rate of about 75%.

Passing the PLE is no easy feat, and passing it with flying colors despite their financial situation made Jomel Lapides’ story awe-inspiring not only for his fellow medical students but also for the general public.

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The topnotcher strived to work hard for his dreams despite the financial constraints he faced.

When asked for his advice to fellow medical students, Lapides said, “Talk to the Lord and tiwala lang sa Kaniya. Have faith. Siya yung ground and source ng strength.”

Lapides used his family’s financial situation as his motivation to keep going forward. His faith did not waver even when he had to go on nurse duty to support his family while studying medicine. That goes without saying no mountain of challenges is too big if you’re ready to fight and work for your dreams.

“And also solicit the help of your family and your friends and get your inspiration from them. Really know yourself and set your goals po.” Lapides added.

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The Road to Your Medical Dreams

Just like Jomel Lapides, the journey to reaching your dreams is not a walk in the park. Life will toss a lot of trials along your path. But that doesn’t mean it is impossible.

Remember, the harder the climb, the sweeter the view.

So don’t let the hardships deter you from your goals.

There are no shortcuts to success, and the same is true with licensure exams. If you’re an aspiring doctor or a medical student, make the most out of your time.

Read as much as you can and put your readings to heart. You need to WANT to become a doctor to actually become one.

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Don’t do it for the prestige of the profession. Don’t do it out of pressure.

Do it for the right reasons – to spend your life helping others.

Keep yourself in check, and don’t lose focus. Acknowledge that you can’t make it through this journey alone.

You will need all the support you can get, and above all, pray earnestly for your dreams.

PLE physician licensure exam PRC result
Construction Worker’s Son landed Top 1 in Licensure Exam

What is the Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines

The Physician Licensure Exam (PLE) is the examination given to medical students in the Philippines in order to become licensed physicians. The written examination is given over a period of four days and covers 12 subjects.


What is on the Exam?


Day 1

  • Biochemistry (8:00 AM–10:00 AM)
  • Anatomy and Histology (11:00 AM–1:00 PM)
  • Microbiology (2:00 PM–4:00 PM)

Day 2

  • Physiology(8:00 AM–10:00 AM)
  • Legal Medicine, Ethics, and Medical Jurisprudence (11:00 AM–1:00 PM)
  • Pathology (2:00 PM–4:00 PM)

Day 3

  • Pharmacology and Therapeutics (8:00 AM–10:00 AM)
  • Surgery, Ophthalmology, Otolaryngology, and Rhinology (11:00 AM–1:00 PM)
  • Internal Medicine (2:00 PM–4:00 PM)

Day 4

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology (8:00 AM–10:00 AM)
  • Pediatrics and Nutrition (11:00 AM–1:00 PM)
  • Preventive Medicine and Public Health (2:00 PM–4:00 PM)

Passing both the written examination and clinical skills assessment is required for licensure.

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Who Takes the Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines?

In the Philippines, anyone who has graduated from an accredited medical school and completed an internship is eligible to take the Physician Licensure Exam.

The exam is administered by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC). The PRC sets the eligibility requirements for taking the licensure exam.

To be eligible, an examinee must:

1) be a citizen of the Philippines or a foreign national with a valid permit to practice medicine in the country;

2) have completed an accredited medical school program; and

3) have satisfactorily completed an internship program.

The licensure exam is given twice a year.

It consists of two parts: written and practical. The written portion covers basic medical sciences, while the practical portion assesses clinical skills.

PLE result Philippines
Construction Worker’s Son landed Top 1 in Licensure Exam

Purpose of the Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines?

The Physician Licensure Exam is the final step in the process of becoming a licensed physician in the Philippines.

The purpose of the exam is to ensure that only those who have met the standards set by the PRC are allowed to practice medicine.

This is important because becoming a doctor is a huge responsibility and requires a lot of knowledge and skills.

Taking and passing the Physician Licensure Exam is required for anyone who wants to be a licensed physician in the Philippines.

The exam ensures that medical graduates have the necessary knowledge and skills to be safe and competent doctors.


Why is the Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines difficult?

The Physician Licensure Exam (PLE) in the Philippines is difficult for a number of reasons.

First, the exam covers a wide range of medical topics, from anatomy to pharmacology.

Second, the exam is given in both English and Filipino, which can be challenging for examinees who are not fluent in both languages.

Finally, the pass rate for the PLE is typically around 50%, which means that it is not an easy exam to pass.


Preparing for the Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines?

Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines The Physician Licensure Exam is administered by the Professional Regulation Commission.

It is given to graduates of medicine and surgery who wish to practice their profession in the Philippines.

The test covers various medical subjects such as anatomy, physiology, pathology, microbiology, pharmacology, and medical jurisprudence.

Here are some tips on how to prepare for the Physician Licensure Exam:

  1. Review your notes from medical school. This will help refresh your memory on all the important concepts that you need to know for the exam.
  2. Make a study schedule and stick to it. Dedicate a certain number of hours each day or week to studying. This will help you stay focused and avoid last-minute cramming.

  3. Join review classes or get a tutor. Make sure that they are up-to-date with the exam format and material.

  4. Read review books and study guides.

medical board examination PLE result
Construction Worker’s Son landedTop 1 in Licensure Exam

Conclusion: Construction Worker’s Son landed Top 1 in Licensure Exam

In conclusion, the Physician Licensure Exam in the Philippines is a necessary step in becoming a licensed physician, just like Dr. Jomel Lapides. The exam covers a broad range of topics and requires a great deal of knowledge and preparation. However, with proper preparation, the exam can be successfully completed by Filipino aspiring doctors.

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Victoria Pagarao, RMT

Victoria Pagarao, RMT

Victoria is a practicing medical technologist in the Philippines who stumbled upon her love for reading books and writing at a very young age. On her free days from hospital work, you can find her six feet-deep in books or writing about everything under (or around) the sun.
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