Smittyballz

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In a recent post someone wrote "I totally know what you are talking about and can definitely relate. I was kind of private about my decision to pursue a career in medicine, and once I finally started telling people, I kept getting the whole "Oh my god, insurance is going to kill you - you'll be so poor" and "it's SUCH a hard career - I hope you know that." As if I don't know that? I have never gone into any situation in my entire life with my eyes closed - why would I start now? I am starting to rant myself, so I'll shut up now!"

Are doctors really poor? Is this a joke? What about insurance how does that work and what does it cost?
 

EctopicFetus

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Yep doctors are poor. I mean many of them cant afford the H1 hummers for their wives and still keep up on the payments for their Aston Martin. I mean can you imagine how rough life must be when you cant go to a 4 star restaurant every night?

Seriously though, the average is a little over $200K, thats after expenses but before taxes, Social Security etc. Anyhow 200K is far from poor in my eyes.
 

DrB

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As with any profession, you can be rich or poor, those are relative terms depending on your expectations. Don't go into medicine for the money (it doesn't sound like you are) and if you continue to "make decisions with your eyes open" then you won't have a problem later.

Yes insurance is a big expense for doctors; depending on the state you live/work and the field you specialize in.


:thumbup:
 

AmyGW

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Smittyballz said:
In a recent post someone wrote "I totally know what you are talking about and can definitely relate. I was kind of private about my decision to pursue a career in medicine, and once I finally started telling people, I kept getting the whole "Oh my god, insurance is going to kill you - you'll be so poor" and "it's SUCH a hard career - I hope you know that." As if I don't know that? I have never gone into any situation in my entire life with my eyes closed - why would I start now? I am starting to rant myself, so I'll shut up now!"

Are doctors really poor? Is this a joke? What about insurance how does that work and what does it cost?
Since it was my post, I'll explain it. I was responding to a post in which a person discussed how people were not supporting his choice to pursue medicine as a career. I was agreeing that people can be harsh and judgmental and used two examples from my own experiences. The "as if I don't know that" part was in reference to the latter example - someone telling me that medicine was a "hard" career.

As a general rule, I would say that most doctors are far from poor, but the first few years can be extremely difficult depending on insurance premiums and amount of med school debt (and yes, insurance can vary hugely from state to state). Since medical malpractice and insurance are such hot topics in current events today, a lot of people think that going into medicine is crazy. Personally, this is not my view, but it doesn't stop my friends and family from trying to "inform" me about this rather unfortunate side to medicine.

In short, I didn't mean to infer that doctors are destitute. Sorry if you misunderstood my post. :)
 
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Smittyballz

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AmyGW said:
Since it was my post, I'll explain it. I was responding to a post in which a person discussed how people were not supporting his choice to pursue medicine as a career. I was agreeing that people can be harsh and judgmental and used two examples from my own experiences. The "as if I don't know that" part was in reference to the latter example - someone telling me that medicine was a "hard" career.

As a general rule, I would say that most doctors are far from poor, but the first few years can be extremely difficult depending on insurance premiums and amount of med school debt (and yes, insurance can vary hugely from state to state). Since medical malpractice and insurance are such hot topics in current events today, a lot of people think that going into medicine is crazy. Personally, this is not my view, but it doesn't stop my friends and family from trying to "inform" me about this rather unfortunate side to medicine.

In short, I didn't mean to infer that doctors are destitute. Sorry if you misunderstood my post. :)
No problem I was just curious as to what you meant. Does anyone know estimates as to what the insurance costs and what insurance a doctor must buy. also any other costs a doctor has to consider when done with residency (besides those lovely student loans) I learned that it depends on the state from above. Which states are cheaper etc... Any info would be helpful thx
 

AmyGW

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Smittyballz said:
No problem I was just curious as to what you meant. Does anyone know estimates as to what the insurance costs and what insurance a doctor must buy. also any other costs a doctor has to consider when done with residency (besides those lovely student loans) I learned that it depends on the state from above. Which states are cheaper etc... Any info would be helpful thx

Here are some good articles on insurance premiums around the country.

http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2004/11/15/prl11115.htm

http://www.acep.org/1,32158,0.html

http://www.memag.com/memag/article/articleDetail.jsp?id=108537

The last link is especially good, as it shows a state by state comparison of insurance premiums for internists as of last year.

Hope this helps! :D
 

Law2Doc

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Smittyballz said:
In a recent post someone wrote "I totally know what you are talking about and can definitely relate. I was kind of private about my decision to pursue a career in medicine, and once I finally started telling people, I kept getting the whole "Oh my god, insurance is going to kill you - you'll be so poor" and "it's SUCH a hard career - I hope you know that." As if I don't know that? I have never gone into any situation in my entire life with my eyes closed - why would I start now? I am starting to rant myself, so I'll shut up now!"

Are doctors really poor? Is this a joke? What about insurance how does that work and what does it cost?
Insurance takes a big bite, but isn't the only reason medicine isn't currently one of the most lucrative professions. While doctors in the specialties years down the road do quite well (although managed care is making bigger dents every day), the upfront costs of medicine are very high. Medical school is more years and more expensive than any other professional school. Once one completes med school, most people do a minimum of four years residency (and often double that) at a very modest/low salary (quite nominal if you figure out what a resident is paid per hour). It is only after that that you start to reap the benefit of your hard work. In most other professions (eg. finance, law), you would start earning decent money much earlier, pay off your student loans much quicker, and thanks to the time value of money (i.e. interest and investments), individuals in such other professions have an enormous (and often insurmountable) lead in terms of lifetime income.
 
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Smittyballz

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Law2Doc said:
Insurance takes a big bite, but isn't the only reason medicine isn't currently one of the most lucrative professions. While doctors in the specialties years down the road do quite well (although managed care is making bigger dents every day), the upfront costs of medicine are very high. Medical school is more years and more expensive than any other professional school. Once one completes med school, most people do a minimum of four years residency (and often double that) at a very modest/low salary (quite nominal if you figure out what a resident is paid per hour). It is only after that that you start to reap the benefit of your hard work. In most other professions (eg. finance, law), you would start earning decent money much earlier, pay off your student loans much quicker, and thanks to the time value of money (i.e. interest and investments), individuals in such other professions have an enormous (and often insurmountable) lead in terms of lifetime income.
So if doctors have to pay such hight premiums how does one afford it, esp if they are coming off of there residency. Does a doctor in residency have to get insurance? Im not really concerned with making millions of dollars, but I dont want to dish out half of my salary after I busted my butt to get where im at.
 

Pemulis

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As I understand it, residents are employees of the hospital where they are training, and as such don't have to carry their own insurance; it's covered by the hospital. Once in practice, you should be making enough to pay for the insurance rates. Keep in mind that reported doctors salaries are AFTER expenses like insurance, so when you hear that a surgeon in a particular city makes an avg of 200k, for example, that means 200k AFTER paying insurance, rent, secretary's salary, etc. A typical medical practice takes in several times the amount of the physician's final salary.

Just to state this emphatically, doctors are not poor. But they do have to sacrifice a lot for their careers, and not only during training/residency. If a person wants to make money in life, medicine is not the best way to do it. But if you love medicine and want to do it for the right reasons, you shouldn't let financial concerns keep you from doing it, because in the end you will make enough to live comfortably.