How's a typical outpatient neurology practice set up?

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Jan 3, 2017
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I know it's a difficult question to answer given the variability but let us consider a "typical" outpatient general neurology community practice set up, not academics or purely private practice.

Is it common to see patients all day 5 days a week? Is a 4 day a week schedule OK to ask for when looking for jobs (I know you can theoretically ask for anything but would potential employers be put off by this request)? 5 full clinical days per weeks seems a little insane to me and I consider myself pretty efficient. Where do you find the time to return phone calls, fill out paper work, return pages or fill out notes? What if you need to go to a dentist appointment?

Also whats the typical time slot allotted for each patient visit? Is 60 minutes new and 30 minutes follow up the norm?

Side question. When should graduating residents begin to apply for jobs?

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Most hospital employed outpt groups will require X number of patient hours i.e. revenue generating hours per week. This includes not only office visits but can also include time spent doing EEG or EMG.

For 1.0 FTE, that number is usually 36 hours per week although there are some places that are 32. Anything less would be rare.

In non-academic settings, time slots cam be 40/20 or 60/30 for new/return.

4 weeks vacation + CME time (usually a week) + paid holiday/sick leave are pretty standard. Pre-covid, a lot of people were getting generous sign on bonuses + moving stipend. It will be interesting to see how this changes once hospitals begin hiring again.

You should begin looking for jobs late PGY3 i.e. May/June or late PGY4 if doing fellowship.
Things can vary between different practices and institutional settings. I do approximately 2.5 days of clinic per week but others do up to 4.5 days.

In my system, we have neurologists seeing as little as 8-10 clinic patients per day vs those seeing 35 patients per day. The average is usually somewhere in between. If you are salaried, you probably don’t mind seeing less. If you have RVU-based compensation, then the opposite is usually true.

The more diagnostics/procedures you are proficient in, usually means less clinic days, which means less clinic notes, phone calls, etc. I do both EMGs and EEGs. You usually don’t get any extra time to read EEGs (unless you always have a constant volume of long term monitoring like from EMU orinpatient), but I do have 2 full days dedicated to EMGs. When the demand gets high, I can even spend a 3rd day doing EMGs.

From my experience, 20-30% patients can no show or cancel. So that usually frees up time. Plus, I get a half day of administrative time. Of course, I also cover the hospital every other week, but that is usually light.
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