Why labels matter — when choosing a dermatologist

In modern relationships, it is not that surprising to find out that the couple you think have been committed to each other aren’t actually “together.” However, this blog post is not about labels in a relationship (girlfriend, boyfriend, it’s complicated) but about what you need to know when choosing a dermatologist, which is kinda more important. Don’t you think? Haha

1. A dermatologist is a licensed physician.

But, of course! This should be a no-brainer. All doctors finished pre-med (college) and five years of proper medical education before taking the physician licensure exams (PLE).

2. Dermatology is a three-year residency training (in the Philippines).

Reposted from the Philippine Dermatological Society’s Facebook page

After taking the PLE, one must undergo additional three years of training to become a doctor who can treat diseases of the skin, hair, and nails aka a dermatologist. In our residency training, we are also exposed and trained to do aesthetic procedures like lasers, and injection of fillers and botulinum toxin (e.g. Botox).

3. The Philippine Dermatological Society supervises 11* accredited institutions all over the country to hone future dermatologists.

You may have noticed that a weird suffix usually comes after the MD of a doctor’s name. For now, I write my name as “Rachelle Ramilo, MD” in prescriptions. My goal is to have the suffix “DPDS” after that MD — “Rachelle Ramilo, MD, DPDS” because it would mean that I have already completed my residency training (3 years) AND passed the dermatology specialty boards. Those with the suffix DPDS are diplomates (D) of the Philippine Dermatological Society (PDS)!

After that, the next goal is to become a “fellow” hence the suffix would be FPDS. A PDS dermatologist gets this after two years of becoming a full-fledged specialist. You may think that these are just letters, so babaw. But then, these letters signify the amount of training that a dermatologist has gone through to be able to provide the proper care for patients with problems on their skin, hair, or nails.

I did not know anything about this until I became a resident myself. Abiding to the rules of the society has indeed helped these 11 institutions produce experts in the field of dermatology. Just as there is quality control in manufacturing goods, there is PDS in making sure that Filipinos have quality dermatologists that they can turn to.

4. It is easy to find board-certified dermatologists near you.

All you have to do is go to the PDS website (pds.org.ph). At the home page, you can immediately find the search button.


You could opt to just input your location (province or town) and the doctors’ names and their clinic addresses will just pop out. Easy, right? You’re welcome! 😉

Search PDS

*As of present writing, there are 11 accredited institutions, but a few additions are in order.

If you are near, you can consult with our dermatology out-patient clinic at the UERM Hospital (64 Aurora Boulevard, Quezon City) every Tuesday to Saturday, from 8AM to 2PM. For more information, you may reach us at 0917-828-3735 or (02)8716-6561. Consultation fee is only 100 pesos (charity rate).

I hope you are somehow enlightened by this post! 🙂

Your soon-to-be DPDS,

Rach ♥

3 thoughts on “Why labels matter — when choosing a dermatologist

  1. Pingback: Skin Care Regimen: Day and Night | rachelleramilo.com

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