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Does anyone work part time in pathology?

Discussion in 'Pathology' started by InanelyHighNut, May 8, 2017.

  1. InanelyHighNut

    InanelyHighNut Hungry 7+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2009
    I'm asking for a friend who will be doing at least 1 fellowship in Surgical Pathology soon.

    Thanks for the help in advance.
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  3. icpshootyz

    icpshootyz 7+ Year Member

    Sep 17, 2009
    Plenty do. We hire locums pathologists to fill days off/vacation time all the time. Sometimes folks do it because they can't find a full-time job, others choose to do it for flexibility, like having young kids at home etc. It's definitely possible. We also have people in our group that work less than full time on a more set schedule, such as 3 or 4 days a week rather than 5.
    InanelyHighNut likes this.
  4. octopusprime

    octopusprime Physician

    May 6, 2016
    Guess it depends on what part time means...20 hrs? 30?
  5. yaah

    yaah Boring Administrator Physician 10+ Year Member

    Yes. The meaning of this can vary. In my group over the years, we have had people work 3 days a week, 4 days a week, or 5 days a week with more time off. The more time you take off, the less you get paid. But everyone does the same amount of call.
  6. Pathbusiness


    Oct 3, 2016
    San Ramon
    A lot of people in private practice work part time. I am one of them these days.
  7. LADoc00

    LADoc00 There is no substitute for victory. 10+ Year Member

    Sep 9, 2004
    My entire practice structure is basically PT. Not only of course it is possible, it is way to go in my opinion.

    1.) life is short
    2.) there is no connection between higher pay and sitting in an office all day
    3.) medicine is so commoditized, there is no reason why physicians should continue to pretend to be monks married only to their profession

    I had a partner in the group for a longggg time who planned on cutting back, going to really PT schedule (like a week every month or every other month) then showed up one day, handed over his pager and badge, cleared out his desk and left. I was floored because he was so young.

    Didnt even hear from him for like a month before I got a message through social media he was enrolled in cooking classes in Tuscany and having the time of his life. I tell our hospital colleagues when they ask about him that he is a winner. DO NOT BE THAT DECREPIT OLD PATHOLOGIST THAT HOSPITAL ADMINS NEED TO FIND A REASON TO KICK OUT THE DOOR BEFORE THEY DIE.
  8. dhpath

    dhpath 2+ Year Member

    Jan 5, 2013
    Such an inspiring story!! I love it and seriously thinking to follow him sooner than I originally anticipated.
  9. coroner

    coroner Peace Sells...but who's buying? Physician 10+ Year Member

    Aug 3, 2007
    22 Acacia Avenue
    There’s a flip side to this coin as well. As idealistic as it may sound to work part time or just go off the radar and live la dolce vita in Tuscany, it’s just not practical for the majority of us in this field, particularly early on. Unless you’re a trust fund baby, married another doctor/successful professional who’s the breadwinner, or consider medicine your side gig while flipping beachfront houses or managing hedge funds, this will be a full time profession for most people over the bulk of their career. There may not be a connection between higher pay and sitting in the office all day, but there is an obvious correlation between income and working part time vs full time.

    If you’re coming out of training like most residents/fellows and are 300K in debt, married, buying a house, starting a family and without any sort of nest egg, then you’ll practically have to work full time. Working 2d/wk or picking up locums here and there making 100-150K/yr ain’t gonna cut it. Sacrificing income now means you’re just pushing your retirement later and you could wind up being that decrepit old pathologist…
  10. octopusprime

    octopusprime Physician

    May 6, 2016
    I don't think LA was necessarily implying part-time is the way to go...Debt+starting family+no nest egg = need money, and yes the general rule of thumb (in terms of part time vs full time) is the more you work the more you make [save the above noted exceptions], but I make more working 30-35 hrs/week than 95% of pathmill and academic minions, and that's not because I work "harder", nor because of any of the exceptions you noted, it's because the job market is a crap shoot, reimbursement rates are widely variable, some groups are just inherently well positioned, AND I wasn't content to settle for the pathmill or academic income.
  11. LADoc00

    LADoc00 There is no substitute for victory. 10+ Year Member

    Sep 9, 2004
    My story was to illustrate that a vast majority of older physicians will never their job until they "set for life" but when you ask them what "set for life" is, they have no clue, no $$ amount, no road to get there..nothing. A vast majority of humans are on a treadmill to nowhere for reasons they cant even well verbalize.

    I know the day I will be done with this and that day is getting closer and closer. I may dabble here and there, but in the not so distant future I will be the guy living the relaxed life while other folks imagine I have some huge inherited trust fund...(which is not case as my parents were somewhere between dirt poor and blue collar America)

    Im not so sure making crazy amounts of $$ is the answer, it CAN help but often it doesn't for most Prodigious Under-accumulators of Wealth which physicians are like literally at the top of the chart. Nah most doctors spend money like they are (racist term) rich (will omit the actual word for all the SDN PC ears cant handle much). They die barely middle class having slaved away for 50 years post residency in some crap job they hate. Very few of us will escape the trap. It's akin to escaping prostitution, the lure of relatively easy money, something you know you can do and their spendy lifestyle is a total prison.

    I told this doc the other day he was a slave, his reply was "Im not a slave, I drive a BMW!" Yah...yah keep telling yourself that.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2017
  12. Aqua_Vitae


    Mar 14, 2017
    These are great posts especially LADoc. And thank you yaah for responding to my private message a few months ago.

    1) Life is short. I'm gonna be 40 soon for reference.

    After graduating from a great medical school ('04) I decided to take some time off from medicine. I thought it would be a year or two then I would come crawling back. It has been 13 years. I spent my 30s running a small business unrelated to pathology (which is the only residency I would ever, ever, ever do) and worked 25-35 hours a week. My income was a little over 100k on average.

    I say this because income is only one variable to financial health and happiness.

    I competed in the MATCH the past two years, and I get interviews but not many. The people at my school are not so helpful and I even kinda got shut out by a colleague who was actually in my medical school class and a friend. I did nothing wrong and the person even wrote me a character LOR this season and now shut out (won't reply to email)

    As I look back on my thirties, I think the reason they were so fun, and it felt like I had so much money was because I am not a fan of marriage or children or real estate. I knew I wanted to only get married after 40 if ever, and I would never buy a house unless I wanted to start a family.

    I send my cousin an email about this who is a wicked data scientist hacker type and his boss is all up in arms about how could they not want an awesome doctor from an awesome school! It's because of my time off obviously and the 1997 residency freeze or w/e.

    He offers to train me to become a data scientist. It's the sexiest job ever and they make bank. Nice. I'm gonna take a year off from the pathology match and see what happens. This is not an anti-pathology or anti-doctor post. It just wasn't working out FOR ME so I'm gonna do what I did last time and see what else is out there.

    I bought a baby blue Aston when I had a quarter life crisis at 30. Is that better than a beamer?
  13. octopusprime

    octopusprime Physician

    May 6, 2016
    Sounds like you're really into "you". Med school debt?
    An Aston while just breaking 6 figures at 30 years old is more than a quarter life crisis.
    icpshootyz likes this.
  14. gbwillner

    gbwillner Pastafarian Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Just stay away from Herbalife.
  15. yaah

    yaah Boring Administrator Physician 10+ Year Member

    The problem with many doctors is they spend too much money. They're trying to compete I guess with who knows what.
  16. KCShaw

    KCShaw 7+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2007
    Couple things I agree with in particular. Life is short (at least, too short to sit around in an office by yourself for the majority of it), and if you want to retire &/or do other things, make a plan. Sit down with someone who is not a financial idiot (as virtually all physicians are -- it's why we did medicine and not business, finance, etc.) and look realistically at what you have, what you want, when you want it, and how to make it happen. I totally agree that too many folks hit the real world and it's like college all over again -- MONEY/FREEDOM AT LAST, TIME TO SPLURGE! And they buy a new car, house, etc. while paying the minimum or barely more on all of those plus school loans, and in less than a year find themselves locked into too much debt while saving too little for their new baseline lifestyle. Sad thing is that most of the time some decent planning will get most of that lifestyle anyway, and you'll actually be able to retire before you keel over at the scope.

    No question that I would be willing to work until I was older, if I could start part time, like, now. One of the difficulties for me is that the market in forensic path is different. While there are part time jobs out there, they appear to be relatively few, perhaps not in locations I would prefer, and if I found one there is even less of a guarantee a "part time" position would remain for the length of time I might be looking at. Anyway, point being, there are individual idiosyncrasies to take into account. Personally I'm just trying harder to pay off debt, save, invest moderately intelligently, and review my projections on a regular basis, so my decisions can be more about what I want and less about pure necessity.
  17. mario2010

    mario2010 7+ Year Member

    Sep 29, 2010 rock ! my goal is also the same, but with my current pace it would take me at least 5-7 years to hit that number, its a bit idiotic but I actually have a count down to freedom clock running :) I am still not sure what I would do after that though as doing nothing usually drives me crazy.
  18. LADoc00

    LADoc00 There is no substitute for victory. 10+ Year Member

    Sep 9, 2004
    RE is really really good, esp where I am to create permanent passive income. I could step away from my practice today, manage it from afar, rent out all properties and never work a day in my life again. Just in passive income, I would probably NET 50K a month. I told a plastic surgery new in town this last month and he spit the beer he was drinking all over, so maybe Im unusual?? Dunno.
  19. Pathbusiness


    Oct 3, 2016
    San Ramon
    I did the same six years ago. Started investing in RE. Now own multiple rentals which bring in $50K a month plus millions in equity.
  20. gbwillner

    gbwillner Pastafarian Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    it took me 3 days to figure out what you guys were referring to as "RE."

    I would only add that owning and maintaining properties is definitely not so easy. We call it "passive" but you have to manage the properties, unless you hire someone to do this, typically at 30% of gross rents (likely wiping out your margins). I can tell you horror stories of bad tenants, fake rentals on Craigslist, and squatters. I'm not saying that RE is a bad investment (quite the opposite), but it requires work and due diligence, like anything else. Alternately, for a little less risk and reward, you can invest in RE stocks like REITs, where you leverage thousands (or millions) of mortgages or rental properties. These typically pay about 10% returns in dividends.
    Pathbusiness likes this.

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