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Pediatricians Most Satisfied With Chosen Profession

Posted by Jane Akre
Friday, September 04, 2009 10:38 AM EST
Category: Major Medical
Tags: Physican Survey, Pediatricians, Doctor Burn-Out, Internal Medicine, Family Medicine

Pediatricians top the list of doctors most satisfied with their jobs, while surgeons are the least satisfied according to this survey.


IMAGE SOURCE: IMAGE SOURCE: © iStockPhoto/ doctor taking notes/ author: sstop

Which doctors are the most satisfied with their chosen profession?

Pediatricians, according to a survey released Thursday.

The survey by the Center for Studying Health System Change, and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, asked 4,700 physicians how they feel about their profession.

Not a surprise - those doctors who earned $250,000 a year or more report they are more satisfied with their career.

A little over one-third of doctors make between $150,000 to $250,000 a year, with about one-third making less than $150,000 a year.

Pediatricians are, as a group, 88 percent satisfied with their career choice. Nine percent were unsatisfied, reports the Wall Street Journal.

About 75 percent of physicians accept all or most new Medicare patients. The majority have contracts with managed care plans. Just under 60 percent provided some charity care.

Very dissatisfied doctors work in the area of surgical specialties (4.7 percent), internal medicine (4.1 percent), and family/general practice (3.9 percent).

The Health Tracking Physician Survey uncovers basic physician demographic information, practice organization, and career satisfaction.

The 2008 survey was taken of doctors who provide at least 20 hours of direct patient care. There was a 62 percent response rate. Three-quarters of the respondents were men, but among doctors under the age of 40, slightly more than 41 percent are women, which may signal the changing workforce.

Last year a Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) survey of 1,177 medical students found that among medical students, only 2 percent planned to pursue the field of primary care internists.

12 percent had chosen the field of pediatrics and five percent were going into family medicine, both also primary-care fields.

Nearly twenty years ago, nine percent said they planned to pursue internal medicine.

Why? Money seems to be one concern.

When they graduate, the average medical student owes $140,000 in student loans. Primary care doctors make the least among doctors who choose to specialize. #

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