Splenda88

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There are similar threads going around in other specialty forum. I know many premeds and med students would like know what it's like to be an internist. Some of the questions below would provide some understanding how practicing IM is like.

Are you happy working as an internist (0-10)?
What was your reason for going into IM in the first place?
Do you like your hours? Do you feel like you have enough time for yourself, family/other interests?
Do you work outpatient or inpatient or a mix? Have you ever switched from one to the other, if so why?
Do you feel fairly compensated?
Would you mind sharing rough approximate of your compensation?
Would you choose IM again?
If you HAD to choose a different specialty, what would it be?
Anything else you'd like to share?


Credit to @Baller2016
 
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DrMetal

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Are you happy working as an internist (0-10)?
Yes, a 7. I like to the job. I don't love it, like I love guitar, golf, whiskey, my wife and kids. And that's ok. You should be about a 7, you like it enough to do it. Understand you'll have some bad days, where you might be a 2. But overall, 7 is a good place to be.

What was your reason for going into IM in the first place?
For me, it was a toss up between IM and GS. I like the bread and butter stuff. These are the 2 specialties that make stuff happen.

Do you like your hours? Do you feel like you have enough time for yourself, family/other interests?
Yes, I do mostly inpatient. I can get away from the hospital and just carry the pager (except when admitting and on call). But that's ok. At some level, you have to understand that medicine is not a 9 to 5 job. You will inevitably have to work some weekends, holidays, etc. I like it. I use work to get out of stupid family functions.

Do you work outpatient or inpatient or a mix? Have you ever switched from one to the other, if so why?
I'm in the military, so I have to do both, but I far prefer inpatient medicine (and do inpatient mostly).

Do you feel fairly compensated?
Sure. General Internists make 200-300K. I think that's fair. We don't do procedures, don't carry as much liability.

Would you choose IM again?
Sure, why the hell not.

If you HAD to choose a different specialty, what would it be?
General Surgery. Would've done it if I was younger and could slug through a 6 year residency. but I was in my mid-30s and already tired!
 
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jurassicpark

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There are similar threads going around in other specialty forum. I know many premeds and med students would like know what it's like to be an internist. Some of the questions below would provide some understanding how practicing IM is like.

Are you happy working as an internist (0-10)?
What was your reason for going into IM in the first place?
Do you like your hours? Do you feel like you have enough time for yourself, family/other interests?
Do you work outpatient or inpatient or a mix? Have you ever switched from one to the other, if so why?
Do you feel fairly compensated?
Would you mind sharing rough approximate of your compensation?
Would you choose IM again?
If you HAD to choose a different specialty, what would it be?
Anything else you'd like to share?


Credit to @Baller2016

I'd rate my experience as a 7. The ever increasing hours, bureaucracy and administrative work I have to put in is getting ridiculous. Luckily, most administrative work comes with surf and turf and usually my choice of alcohol (and we are talking about some really good alcohol).

I had the most fun in IM. While I definitely loved my time in surgery, and my humor is much more ER oriented. IM allowed me more time to stop and smell the roses. I have more time to take with myself or my patients. If I wanted a second-look on something, I could do so. And for the most part, when the clock struck 7 I was done.

I work generally 12 hour shifts as a hospitalist. As a private hospitalist I am technically NEVER off. The consultants or PMDs can call me at any time, my phone is never off. I've taken care of issues even while lounging in the freakin' Maldives. I had a surgeon demanding I was the only person to take care of his crashing patient when I was across the country. So never really off. I really would like more time off. My days on and off are not regular, sometimes I'm on for two-three weeks with maybe one or two days off. But I can usually finagle a vacation here and there.

I am purely inpatient. There was a push for us to do some outpatient/hospital discharge followup, never really materialized. I did some insurance administrative work if that counts.

I think my compensation is okay, could be better for the amount of work I put. But the bonuses and eventual dividends/payoff is what makes me keep going. My rough approximate is much much more than the national average.

I would choose IM again.

If I had to choose a different specialty, EM. Has the right kind of pace and humor I can live with.
 
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Yes. happy.
There are plenty of opportunities in IM and out of IM.
It gives you a solid background for non-medicine based careers.
Lots of jobs. You want to be a hospitalist? you can go anywhere in the country.
 
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sah

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Right now, I’m the happiest I have ever been at work...
I am 69. I have a pension and collecting social security. This gives me a yearly base of $125k. It pays the bills. And more. I do not need to work. But “I have to work. ” Actually, I would work at my current job for free. I failed to mention that to my boss when hired 2 years ago. They give me about $165,000 a year for working 18 hr a week. This is on top of my base Income, Full benefits as it is a half time position. So much for the details most folks want to know.

More important to me, I am working like I always wanted. I would say my current job is a “10.” Without any pressure to produce, or make ridiculous salary for a large house, pay loans. I go into a small rural clinic that actually wants me there to be a doctor. The prior internist retired and I was filling a portion of that hole. For some reason, these patients are way more complicated than when I was in an affluent large city for 25 years. But though complicated , the patients seem way more appreciative of my being there. Strangers in the parking lot say “thank you for being here” as I walk into the hospital. I truly love getting up in the morning, and driving 45 miles to a more remote area away from the city.

Previous, I worked in an affluent west coast city for 25 years. I would grade that job as a “8.“ That was 7 days a week in the office and in the hospital as well. Getting up at 3am to drive intothe ICU for a septic shock patient got hard to do the last 5 years. I would do that 25 years again if given the choice. It was medicine, and I have always loved to do that.

So next, I worked for the prison system for ten years. That was a “5.” The patients or inmates were fine. But the system running it was very stressful to work with. Layers of complex paperwork and an inappropriate medical record system. To see a 10 minute simple HTN patient would take 60 minutes to fill out 10-15 forms. Although it provided a pension, I would not go back.

For me, working in medicine when good, it is very good. When it is bad, it is still good.
 
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Arodgeisfire

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Right now, I’m the happiest I have ever been at work...
I am 69. I have a pension and collecting social security. This gives me a yearly base of $125k. It pays the bills. And more. I do not need to work. But “I have to work. ” Actually, I would work at my current job for free. I failed to mention that to my boss when hired 2 years ago. They give me about $165,000 a year for working 18 hr a week. This is on top of my base Income, Full benefits as it is a half time position. So much for the details most folks want to know.

More important to me, I am working like I always wanted. I would say my current job is a “10.” Without any pressure to produce, or make ridiculous salary for a large house, pay loans. I go into a small rural clinic that actually wants me there to be a doctor. The prior internist retired and I was filling a portion of that hole. For some reason, these patients are way more complicated than when I was in an affluent large city for 25 years. But though complicated , the patients seem way more appreciative of my being there. Strangers in the parking lot say “thank you for being here” as I walk into the hospital. I truly love getting up in the morning, and driving 45 miles to a more remote area away from the city.

Previous, I worked in an affluent west coast city for 25 years. I would grade that job as a “8.“ That was 7 days a week in the office and in the hospital as well. Getting up at 3am to drive intothe ICU for a septic shock patient got hard to do the last 5 years. I would do that 25 years again if given the choice. It was medicine, and I have always loved to do that.

So next, I worked for the prison system for ten years. That was a “5.” The patients or inmates were fine. But the system running it was very stressful to work with. Layers of complex paperwork and an inappropriate medical record system. To see a 10 minute simple HTN patient would take 60 minutes to fill out 10-15 forms. Although it provided a pension, I would not go back.

For me, working in medicine when good, it is very good. When it is bad, it is still good.
Thanks for your input, doc!

Any sage advice for those of us in training? Medicine seems to be in a turning point in history right now (and, I don’t just mean in regards to SARS-CoV-2).

Happy to see you’re still seeing patients: keep trucking :)
 

sah

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Thanks for your input, doc!

Any sage advice for those of us in training? Medicine seems to be in a turning point in history right now (and, I don’t just mean in regards to SARS-CoV-2).

Happy to see you’re still seeing patients: keep trucking :)

Medicine may always appear to be at a turning point. When I finished in 1980, the older docs were complaining about the new HMOs, or Medicare Creation from the 1960s. Even further back to 1910, the Flexner report exposed the poor quality of medical education.

If you practiced before 1930, there was a real chance you would die from your patients meningitis. A lot of docs were in sanitariums for TB getting there lungs collapsed.

So, the current Covid looks like more inasmuch as the economic impact to the country is coupled to it. But it is still one of many challenges medicine has to face. We have seen others recently like HIV and Ebola.

My sage advice would be face the changes. They will keep coming. You can deal with them just like you are managing all the complexities of Covid patient care. Try to focus on why you chose medicine as a career. The science will always be there for you, to stimulate your interest and help work thru management issues.

Look at your patients, and see the beauty in what you have done for them. It will have you coming back for more.
 
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kaycee18

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im not sure i am very happy with the choice. If i had to do it over again, I won't even practice medicine. but i still owe 250K so need to pay it off before i can change fields.
 
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Trogghunter

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Are you happy working as an internist (0-10)?

12/10. Love it.

What was your reason for going into IM in the first place?

Jack of all trades, master of none.

Do you like your hours?

Avg 50hrs/7 days then off 7 days

Do you feel like you have enough time for yourself, family/other interests?

Travel the world on my week(s) off

Do you work outpatient or inpatient or a mix?
Inpatient, not looking back.

Have you ever switched from one to the other, if so why? No

Do you feel fairly compensated?

Yes.

Would you mind sharing rough approximate of your compensation?

People in my group make >600k. Depends on how you grind. Average over 3

Would you choose IM again?

Always

If you HAD to choose a different specialty, what would it be? Wouldn't consider it.

Anything else you'd like to share? Invest your proceeds early, get sleep, use sunscreen.

Credit to @Baller2016
 
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jurassicpark

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Is JurassicPark implying that even on his off days he might still get calls? If I work 7 on 7 off I can "turn off my phone" for the whole 7 days off right

I've taken calls when I was playing vacationing in the Maldives.

It depends on the group you work for and whether you want a partnership. Large corporations where you are just a wheel in the cog, their people often stop picking up the phone as soon as their shift ends. What keeps us in business is that we are very responsive and available.
 

Clockdoc89

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I've taken calls when I was playing vacationing in the Maldives.

It depends on the group you work for and whether you want a partnership. Large corporations where you are just a wheel in the cog, their people often stop picking up the phone as soon as their shift ends. What keeps us in business is that we are very responsive and available.

MS4 here still trying to figure out what I want to go into. How common is it to be able to find a partnership opportunity in Internal Medicine? Either as a Hospitalist or Outpatient, or really any job setup you can think of, how realistic is it to become a partner?
 

sah

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MS4 here still trying to figure out what I want to go into. How common is it to be able to find a partnership opportunity in Internal Medicine? Either as a Hospitalist or Outpatient, or really any job setup you can think of, how realistic is it to become a partner?
In Northern California, very easy to get position with large group. Most will have a 2 year contract set salary before Moving to production based formula. As you buy in you are sort of a partner but it is called a shareholder.
 

InvestingDoc

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Are you happy working as an internist (0-10)? I would rate my satisfaction as a solid 8 out of 10
What was your reason for going into IM in the first place? I love a good case, differential, and the Breath of knowledge that you can learn for acute care and outpatient medicine.
Do you like your hours? Do you feel like you have enough time for yourself, family/other interests? Hours could be better but I don't mind it. I do feel like I have enough time for family.
Do you work outpatient or inpatient or a mix? Have you ever switched from one to the other, if so why? Initially I was a hospitalist and did inpatient only. Loved that hours, hated the bureaucracy and missing every other weekend and holiday. It got old very quick. Now on outpatient, it has its own challenges but for me I love it. Also, hospitalist medicine is being ruled by large groups where docs have no ability often for partnership. You are going to have numerous bosses and lack a voice in the organization. My previous hospitalist group fired almost half of the docs who made the least money for the group and replaced them with midlevels.
Do you feel fairly compensated? No. Opening-your own solo practice, if you are in a desirable area you will make less than Medicare reimbursement from commercial insurance. It sucks, you have to build up your practice and argue for higher rates.
Would you mind sharing rough approximate of your compensation? about 280ish to 300 as a hospitalist. On track for 400k this year outpatient.
Would you choose IM again? **** yes
If you HAD to choose a different specialty, what would it be? Derm all day every day. The lifestyle and after seeing how well our derm treated my wifes skin cancer, mad respect.
Anything else you'd like to share? If you don't love what you do you will be one of these people counting the days until you retire or get out of medicine. I have good days and bad days but I like showing up for work every day.
 
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Are you happy working as an internist (0-10)?
-Solid 6 right now. Would have been 8 before COVID.

What was your reason for going into IM in the first place?
Had no clue what I wanted to be, so chose the thing that had the most options.

Do you like your hours? Do you feel like you have enough time for yourself, family/other interests?
I work 1 week on and 2 weeks off of 90 hour weeks and 1 week on, 1 week off of 70 hour weeks. Total of 21.5 weeks a year plus moonlighting

Do you work outpatient or inpatient or a mix? Have you ever switched from one to the other, if so why?
Inpatient only. Thankyou please.

Do you feel fairly compensated?
-Before COVID, yes. Now, kinda feeling screwed by my employer.

Would you mind sharing rough approximate of your compensation?
-$280k-$300k

Would you choose IM again?
-yes.

If you HAD to choose a different specialty, what would it be?
-neurology, probably stroke neurology. I love the neuro exam and strokes, the imaging. As a MS3, really only saw limited use of thrombolytics, and it felt almost trite to give aspirin and statin to major strokes. There is so many cool things coming out like thrombectomies. . . its all very exciting.

Anything else you'd like to share?
-It feels nice to be a real doctor, though it can be frustrating to witness "specialists" who avoid doing things that really are very simple because they feel they don't have to.
 
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