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People Seem Jaded towards Healthcare

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by makingthejump, 09.19.14.

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  1. makingthejump

    makingthejump

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    As I read this forum regularly I am beginning to see that there seems entirely too many current healthcare practioners on the internet that are jaded towards a career in healthcare. Why is this? Is it due to lack of perspective of other career options and/or lack of understanding of the current job market in today's society? ....or, are these healthcare careers really THAT bad and don't provide the satisfying work that they appear to offer on the outside? Any insights would be appreciated b/c there is way too much jadedness on these forums and I feel as though the overall reason for being in this industry is being overlooked.
     
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  3. Bangs McCoy

    Bangs McCoy

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    The forums can be pretty toxic - get yourself off of them! Find a mentor, a real flesh and blood person who enjoys being a doctor. This changed my whole perspective and encouraged me to seek out positive experiences. The anonymity of the internet gives unhappy people a chance for some cathartic ranting. I actually think many of the happy doctors don't take to reading these forums or are too busy to care. Read the cynicism, pick out a few valid points, realize that you may encounter the same, but ditch the assumptions. Ain't nobody got time for that.
     
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  4. GunnarBronson

    GunnarBronson

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    It seems to be a publishing bias, so to speak. Do you think doctors who go to work every day and love their job come to internet forums to write about it? Probably not. People who hate their job might be more inclined to do so, though.
     
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  5. jl lin

    jl lin 7+ Year Member

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    I can't cross-post, but here is my perspective, a relevant link to your post. Look for jl lin's response. http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/is-med-school-worth-400k-debt.1097637/#post-15689430

    There are tons of physicians that love what they do; but they have had to come to terms with various negatives in the field--especially now with more regulations and increasing insurance-coverage hoops to jump through.

    My point is that people should get A LOT of clinical exposure--seriously, more than A LOT; b/c the ideal and the reality of what medicine is--well, it's quite far apart.

    It's not about discouraging people. It's about getting as close up and personal with it as you can; since the costs-- money and time and energy-- are much higher for medicine than for other fields. As Dr. Midlife has so aptly stated, "Reality is your friend." Once you do all the arduous hoop-jumping to get into med school, to stay a float--the studying ad nauseum, the steps, etc--then you hopefully do well in matching--then residency and/or fellowship, I mean, you are in it--money-wise--as well as just the plain old investment of time/energy. It's pretty much like there is no going back, unless you are already independently wealthy, win the lottery, or somehow hit some windfall. And many too many feel somewhat stuck--as if in a bad marriage--so to speak. Like now they have kids, and debt, and they can't get out of the situation.

    There are all the hoops for getting in, but the real due diligence is in throwing yourself head-on into the nuts and bolts of the clinical and other realities---and you do this by getting an ocean-full of exposure.

    In my view and experience, there are few things worse that physicians and other healthcare professionals that are less than caring and into what they are doing. It's not fair to the patients, to society, and it's not fair to the individual physician and his/her family. If you love what you do, and really care, you will make it your business to be the best for your patients--even when all the other aspects of healthcare bite. Would you want to see a physician that does not really love and care about his/her field of practice? Would you want to put you life and/or wellbeing--or your children's or families in their hands? Of course not.

    See, regardless of what some others will tell you, it's not just a job. In some ways it is, but in more ways than not, it isn't. You won't know if it was worth the investment until you spend a lot of time up close and personal with it, clinically. I mean, you won't totally get it even then, but you will have hopefully gotten enough insight to be honest with yourself that it's worth the investment of money, time, energy, relationships, whatever.

    So, it's not about being toxic. It's about trying to get real with what it's really about. You won't begin to see that until you get a ton of clinical exposure--and even then, it's just scratching the surface. I mean this is a career that you pretty much get married to--at least that is the case for most folks.
     
    Last edited: 09.19.14
  6. makingthejump

    makingthejump

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    Well put, I agree. I think the internet is full of people who just want to complain because its a medium that provides no ramifications of doing so. Many times I see posts on here and I think to myself how a lack of perspective, an entitled attitude, and an ignorant view of society can really lead one to only see the negatives in their life's work, rather than to appreciate the uniqueness of the true meaning behind what they do on a daily basis. I just hope these people and their posts don't scare off the future individuals who are motivated and passionate to make an impactful difference on our society. Positive thoughts lead to positive behaviors which leads to being happy. Be grateful for what you have, do your research, know yourself, and accomplish your goals.
     
  7. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    I'd argue that the biggest issue is that many people's expectations of medicine aren't in line with the reality. If a career in healthcare entailed only providing healthcare (or even mostly providing healthcare), there would be much less complaining going on. But are you signing on to be a combination of secretary/social worker/technician who spends the majority of your time behind a computer screen/telephone/desk with only a minority of time actually face to face with a patient? If you think you're signing up for the former, then you're bound to be kinda disgruntled when you realize that your job description primarily entails the latter. Some people do better than others with adjusting to the disconnect between the realities of what the job is, and their expectations of what the job would be.

    I'm not sure if nontrads have it better or not, TBH. On one hand, you may have developed enough perspective to recognize that work is called work for a reason, and it's not supposed to be the funnest thing you've ever done in your life. If my job was tons of fun every second, no one would be paying me a six figure salary to do it. Instead, I'd be paying them, and we'd be calling it recreation. I've worked sucky jobs before, so I'm not surprised that sometimes being a physician is also a sucky job. On the other hand, adjusting to the dysfunction that is our medical system can be hard for someone who's used to being efficacious in their prior job. You will spin your wheels a lot of times in medicine, and that can be frustrating.

    What jl lin said about finances is a big issue, too. Unlike most other jobs, if you're miserable in medicine, you may be too indebted to be able to afford to get out. That's partly a result of poor financial decision-making (living beyond one's means, attending a more expensive college/med school when given the opportunity to attend a cheaper one). But it's hard for many people to resist the siren call of attending a fancy private school that costs 2-3 times as much as your local state U does, and doesn't provide you with 2-3 times more opportunities or 2-3 times better education. That's why I consistently advise premeds to attend the cheapest college and med school they can possibly get into (assuming we're talking about American schools here).

    I disagree with you that it's a bad thing if the negative posts here "scare off the future individuals who are motivated and passionate to make an impactful difference on our society." In fact, I'd argue the exact opposite: if these people have such a tenuous commitment to medicine that reading anonymous griping posts on the internet can dissuade them from pursuing this career, then those posts have done such people a HUGE favor. You have to really, really want to do this job to put up with all the hoops you jump through to get here, and the bulls*** you have to deal with once you do get here. So if you're not able to withstand a few naysayers who don't even know you or what you're capable of/wanting out of life, then you have no business even starting down this path.

    To give you back your own advice, you should look upon those negative posts with gratitude. If nothing else, consider them someone else's attempts to warn you against making some of the mistakes that they made. Try to learn something useful from them. And if you can also find a little room in your heart to have some compassion for that disembodied disgruntled person out there in internet-land, that's not a bad thing either.
     
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  8. alpinism

    alpinism Give Em' the Jet Fuel Bronze Donor 5+ Year Member

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    Completely agree.

    OP ill say this as well.

    Its easy to get a rosy picture of medicine looking from the outside in with your only source of perspective being television/books/magazines and the occasional doctors visit when you were sick.

    Very commonly people pursuing the pre-med path have this one-dimensional view of medicine along with completely unrealistic expectations.

    For instance, if you ask many premeds what life as a doctor is like, most will focus on caring for acutely ill patients with strong support systems who care about their health, diagnosing rare and complex diseases, or fixing problems and saving people's lives. Unfortunately, this isn't what most doctors do on a daily basis. Most medicine today is done from behind a computer screen not at the bedside. It involves making phone calls, filling out paperwork, and sorting through social and financial issues. When it comes to patients, It mainly involves managing chronic self inflicted diseases and treating the symptoms and complications rather than fixing the underlying problem. If you understand this and are okay with it then great, if not, you'll be in for a huge surprise when you start clinical rotations.
     
  9. eablackwell

    eablackwell Not Fast Enough Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

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    I agree with pretty much everything Q said.

    I came into this after being guided by SDN, and despite a sub-standard GPA and coming from a low-income family, I still chose medicine because after years of trying something else, I didn't care about the negatives being thrown around- I wanted to be a doctor.

    I'm an M4 now and about 250k in debt, and I am the happiest I have ever been in my life. I try not to think about the debt, because I will pay it off. I won't be buying a Ferrari, and I won't be king of the castle (as many older doctors are used to), but I will be doing something I love for compensation that I deem fair, and that's worth so much, you just couldn't imagine!

    I know people will say "wait till the loan payments start," and sure, I know it will be rough going, but with income-based repayment it shouldn't be too bad until I'm making enough to afford payments. I'm not looking for nice cars and a mansion- I'm looking to support my family comfortably and give my children a bright future. I taught high school for 3 years before med school, putting in roughly 60-70 hrs a week between work, planning, unpaid student extracurriculars/tutoring, etc, and I made 31k a year. I loved teaching, and I will continue to teach in medicine, but for that amount of money and almost no upward mobility, I decided to go ahead and reach for medicine, since it was my true passion.

    Just be aware that you'll get plenty of gloom and doom outside of the forums as well, but it's all based on perspective. Most of those people come from families where their parents made tons of money and had complete control of their patients, or they had such experiences themselves. Things change, and while every job you ever have will involve bureaucracy, it'll be your own perspective and the amount you love what you're doing that makes the difference.
     
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  10. makingthejump

    makingthejump

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    man this post is spot on. I think everyone has a unique and different perspective and that perspective influences our thoughts, great post.
     
  11. theseeker4

    theseeker4 PGY 1 5+ Year Member

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    Just don't make the mistake of thinking those who complain are entirely off base; try to draw something useful from each person you talk to, and if what they say makes you uncomfortable, you are better served by looking into what they say and why than you are by ignoring it and only listening to the cheerleaders. Not that the jaded ones are any more right, but they are often jaded because they didn't pay enough attention to what the naysayers were complaining about.
     
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  12. makingthejump

    makingthejump

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    yeh man no doubt, gotta learn from everyone and analyze all different angles to make the best decision
     
  13. halodos

    halodos 2+ Year Member

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    What view of medicine are you supposed to give in an interview in? Do you give the realistic or the romantic view, or say something of a balance?

    I just got super depressed when I finished reading the book Doctored by Sandeep Juahar, and confirmed it by talking to a cardiologist I work with. I guess that "playing the game" happens in every career, but you can't really say something like that during an interview right? And I know, the major difference in medicine from other careers is that human moment you can get, so should you even say something about the other realities of medicine?
     
  14. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    Heck to the no! You have zero street cred as a premed unless you're someone with years of allied health experience (paramedic, RN, etc.). Even then, you should keep blowing that sunshine at your interviews. Cynicism is bad enough coming from people who have a reason to be cynical. No one wants to hear it coming from a premed.
     
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  15. brainnurse

    brainnurse Inquisitor, Assassin, High Summoner Bronze Donor 2+ Year Member

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    Here's a little insight, as requested.

    While I love that I do what I do and work where I work, I hate almost every moment I spend in that hospital as a nurse. I hate the back pain, the neverending excrement, the "can i have a comb, and some apple juice, and linen change, and 12/10 pain" moments which makes up 98% of my day.

    Once in a while, I see science and hard work actually making a difference. I hold a patient's hand while she thanks me for her first pain-free moment in days. I see the joy reflected on someone's face as he realizes he's strong enough to stand up. A mother and I smile (and silently cry) in awe as we watch his son open his eyes for the first time since that fateful accident.

    But those moments are so few and far too separated by all these other tasks coupled by the ingratitude of certain POS family members, patients, and even other team members after I just pretty much injured my back to ensure the best outcome for our patient. I know that many healthcare workers feel the same way. It doesn't matter if you're a doctor, physical therapist, nurse, CNA, social worker, whatever -- that feeling of pointlessness wrought by ingratitude, stupidity, and/or downright nastiness from other human components of the giant system can wear away at your resolve to do/be good.

    As years go by, I find myself becoming more and more jaded about this industry. It's not so much the job that's getting me down; it's the environment in which we practice it. Patients who you know are not paying for their care from their own pockets are becoming more and more aggressive and entitled. Oftentimes, we are not doing what we think will help the patient; we (nurses, doctors, and managers) just give in to whatever our patients want, because it simply is not worth our time to argue with somebody who had learned to work the system and who will threaten to sue if we don't give in to their every whim. Critical care nursing (like most of the health professions), at its purest, is a noble, fulfilling calling. This watered down, polluted version of it -- not so much.
     
  16. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    Brainnurse, are you able to cut down your hours at all? While earning more money is nice, I can tell you that the biggest benefit by far to making the change from resident to attending has been averaging half as many hours per week. It's made a huge difference in my quality of life. Seriously, if you can afford to cut back your work hours, you should consider it. Spending less time at work allows a lot more of the aggravations to roll off your back. My plan is to cut my clinical hours back even further in a few years once I have enough retirement savings to not have to continue to aggressively fund my retirement accounts.
     
  17. brainnurse

    brainnurse Inquisitor, Assassin, High Summoner Bronze Donor 2+ Year Member

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    Hi Q. I appreciate the advice. PM going your way so I don't hijack this thread with my woes, haha.
     
    Last edited: 09.24.14
  18. PhoenixFire

    PhoenixFire 5+ Year Member

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    People who love their jobs do go on the Internet to help others, too. I know when I'm successful, I'll frequent SDN to help young students.
     
  19. jl lin

    jl lin 7+ Year Member

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    Brian, I hear some of what you are saying, but as critical care RN of over 20 years, I don't totally agree. Maybe it's the kind of critical care I have done, but I have found excrement to be a very small par of nursing. Also, some families and pts are demanding, but mostly I have enjoyed working with them and the doctors. I have learned so very much, but I started during a different time as you probably. It's been stressful on levels I can't get into here and now. I have seen a lot of death and struggling, but I have also seen more success stories. I had the advantage of an ED RN mon, who allowed me to have a great Birdseye view of healthcare. So, unlike many of my peers, I had a good sense of what I was getting into. I think that has helped me the most. Plus, as corny as it sounds, I really do like helping, caring for, and teaching people.

    My stress has been in working with so many nurses that quickly became chagrin with what they were/are doing and/or the whole healthcare environment. These people have made healthcare much more stressful than what it already is for the rest of us and the pts. It sucks working with people that hate what they do, and I imagine it's no different in terms of docs working with other docs, administrators, and nurses/healthcare people who dislike or hate what they do.

    Once again, I believe people need to see, very up-close, what they are getting into, and if it will fit with them. That makes a big difference in someone ending up as jaded or depressed and frustrated about being in a particular field--especially this one. Until that happens, there will remain a toxic percentage of people with whom we will be forced to work and with whom patients will have to interact during very stressful points of their lives. They are the ones in need, even if they are addicted, psychotic, or pushed beyond their stress threshold. That is what has to stay in focus for any healthcare provider. But this particular brand of hard is due to the demands and exorbitant costs if becoming a physician. At least nurses can move into different areas and do not have anywhere near the burden of financial strain or the costs of time, energy, or postponing their personal lives. This is the harsh reality to which many physicians refer.
     
    Last edited: 09.24.14
  20. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    The thought has occurred to me that maybe part of the problem is this millennial expectation that one is supposed to "love" their job. Says who? Again, it's a job, not a recreational activity. You're being paid to do it because it's work, not because it's fun. It would be great if we all could have these amazing jobs that we loved so much that we'd do them for free if we weren't being paid to do them. Unfortunately, most people do not love their jobs anywhere near that much, and that includes most physicians. I'm right in there with the rest of the non-job lovers. I'm generally satisfied with being a physician, and I like my job, but I definitely don't love it. If I could afford to quit and spend my days (actually nights) doing whatever I felt like doing instead of going to work, I would quit and do whatever I felt like doing instead of going to work. So would 95+% of all the butchers, bakers, and candlestick makers out there. And none of you nontrads is looking to switch from your current career into medicine because you absolutely love your current job either, right?

    Realizing that no, I don't actually have to love my job was actually quite liberating. I go to work, take the best care of my patients that I can, try not to complain, and remind myself frequently that all jobs have their hassles and stresses. That being said, I do think the people who stay in jobs they outright hate are not doing themselves (or their patients, in the case of physicians/other health care providers) any favors. In particular, health care providers who hate medicine really do need to figure out some kind of graceful exit strategy.
     
  21. brainnurse

    brainnurse Inquisitor, Assassin, High Summoner Bronze Donor 2+ Year Member

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    I wish I could bold this entire post. It's like you just described how I'm living my life right now.

    Yay, another nurse! It's always such a special thing for me to encounter one because I've been feeling pretty alone in this endeavor. There might be a PM coming your way in a few minutes, FYI. =D

    As for your post.. I know you said you disagree with some of my points, but I didn't read any of that disagreement in your subsequent points. You mentioned the dissatisfied crew working the floor. I feel like that only complements my earlier point that the human components of this industry truly adds to the stress, and eventual burnout in some cases, inherent in what we do.

    I do apologize for making it sound like poop is a big majority of what we deal with. For some weird reason, I've had diarrhea patients for two weeks straight now. And I'm talking explosive, all-over-the-floor, EVS-ain't-touching-that diarrhea. You cited chagrin as what stresses you out. For me, it's explosive diarrhea. It really puts a damper on things. :p

    Now for the bolded part --- I couldn't agree more. Somebody needs to come up with a class that outlines the realities of the healthcare field or something. I know that extensive volunteering, shadowing, and the eventual clinical portion that accompanies all health-related programs of study are supposed to prepare students to enter the workforce, but this becomes a completely different world once the title of student drops away.

    To the OP, and those who feel that the "overall reason for being in the industry is being overlooked": Welcome to healthcare. The humor is dark, the complaints are many, but most of us still want to believe in the reasons we do what we do (and, for the most part, we all know that about each other). I love this world. I grew up in it; I live in it; I'll probably die doing something in it. That doesn't mean I don't have a ton of moments when I'd rather stay in my car all day than walk into those double doors. That, too, is true of most healthcare workers I meet. Does that make us jaded? Maybe. I know it's weird, and you probably won't get it until you're in the trenches too. It's freaking bananas out here!

    The point is, like so many others have said, make sure you've smelled the patients before getting into half-a-million dollar's worth of debt. Don't do it just to cross off an item on your checklist. Many, many people who did it just for that very reason are now members of the jaded club you were so curious about. Really look at the world around you and see if this is what you want, because, if you're not careful, this world will eat you up alive and spit out a disheveled, disillusioned, even depressed, version of yourself. So make damn sure you know what you're getting yourself into.
     
  22. jl lin

    jl lin 7+ Year Member

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    Right! It's a difference between hating/loathing and not absolutely loving your job. But I did read you to say that you LIKE your job! :) I imagine you also get satisfaction when you know you have done your best to help someone be as well as they can be--whatever that ends up meaning. I also bet that people enjoy working with you, so that tells me you don't fit into the dislike-job or hate-job categories. :)
     
  23. jl lin

    jl lin 7+ Year Member

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    Hey Brian. So many points you have made are so true. I guess for me I expect patients to be demanding. I expect that I will be forced to try to do 15 things with care and intelligence all seemingly at once--even though all the information regarding multi-tasking has shown that in general, it doesn't really work that well. It's like when I moved into critical care peds. Maybe b/c I had already had some children by then, but unlike some of my peers, I expected sick kids to be, well, miserable. They aren't fun. They have zip for coping, and their parents, at least the good ones, are usually super protective, and that translates as more stress on the docs and nurses.

    What I didn't expect in nursing was so much of the insane competitive meanness or gross dissatisfaction I have seen from a fair number of people. You just assume that most people go into a particular area b/c they are as interested and caring of it as you are. So not true. Looking forward to your PM. :)
     
  24. StIGMA

    StIGMA Doctor Professor 7+ Year Member

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  25. jl lin

    jl lin 7+ Year Member

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  26. LabMonster

    LabMonster Clinically relevant. 10+ Year Member

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    Nice Q.

    Pre-emp: this is a small rant.

    I noticed that many posting are pre-med or med-students. Good. You are all appropriately naive and equally effervescent about the medical profession. Q has been there, me too, and for me, the "job" is WAY different than my medical school self could have foretold. The data says that about 50% of physicians (maybe fairly accurate) would not pursue medicine after being in practice. In other words, they did their time, had expectations and expectations not met, they thought ill of the profession/medicine/etc and would never go to medical school again...

    No one tells you how hard this job is and no one can. Sure, med-school is studying and scut and BS, so is residency - but attendings (specifically at teaching institutions) rarely talk to med-studs as if they were colleagues or actual human beings, and so, their opinions are least biased. This job is not easy. Real world doctoring is hard and community practice is much different than tertiary care - especially in rural communities. This job really sucks at times - there are no particular "lifestyle" specialties. As a physician, you will always, always have really bad "patches" - not days, those are not for us.

    The healthcare system in this country is broken, and the culture surrounding healthcare (and the expectations of your patients) is really jacked up. There is no simple fix, there is no one to point a finger at, and we can't lump blame on anyone. It is a comedy of errors, a dark comedy.

    85% of what I do in the ER is irritating nonsense that a PCP could take care of IF THEY HAD TIME WITH THEIR PATIENTS! There is a 15% that potentially needs my paranoid services. Further, there is an 8-10% who sees me who really needs my help, uses my my skills and the things I've learned in training. A percentage of these people, I save their lives. A larger percentage (in the 85%) I make a difference in the quality of their lives. This is not because I'm smart - this is because I choose to give a damn.

    No - we likely don't love our jobs more than the folks laying asphalt, or building houses or milking cows or answering stupid questions about cell phone plans. We're not special, we just spend extra time putting ourselves in a unique position to help people at their most vulnerable times, while placing ourselves at great physical and emotional risk. And... We we earn more than most people in the world.

    If I could quit and be a farmer, I'd do it; but, my bed is made. I've got financial obligations (because of medical school etc) that most landscapers (which I also used to do) would poop their pants if they had to meet, but I jumped into the pool. My condition is "self-inflicted." I don't feel sorry for myself because this job is hard, the medical system sucks, people don't take care of themselves... I chose this road, and I took on the challenges, unbeknownst to me, but I still made the decision. If one is a physician or med-student, one is gifted with the brains and drive and resources to get that far! Realize that the vast majority of people simply can't do that for many reasons. The crux lay on deciding on a career in medicine. Once one has decided and been accepted, the jump has been made and the rest of the ride is dependent on inertia only. One needs to be sure this is the right job! Medicine, especially in this climate, is no panacea for a "feel-good" "do-gooder" solution to one's career dilemmas. Medicine can make more problems than it solves for the potential practitioner.

    If you want to make money - get into investing, banking, something else: invent something, start a company, redesign the wheel. If you want to "do good" all the time - volunteer, travel and help unfortunate folks, be a hippy and be proud. If you want to work really hard, sift through tons of medical literature crap for small practice pearls, get disrespected by most patients, learn physiology you will rarely use, make life and death decisions while exhausted, endure ridiculous amounts of stress for small pockets of justification and clarity then maybe you should consider medicine. Every day I meet at least one patient that makes it all worthwhile - but it ain't easy. Every day there is one patient who's life would have either been unbearable or impossible without my intervention. There is no reason it should be easy and no guarantee that makes it so.

    So make your choices and be informed. Talk to doctors and learn what they like and don't. This profession is much like a water slide: one you get going, you really can't stop - whether you scream and bitch and hate your ride or whoop it up and take every minute in as a new experience is largely attitude. Giddyup folks, it ain't for everyone. But, if you don't like what you're doing, you can always move and switch jobs - it may provide the optimal water slide ride you're looking for.
     
  27. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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  28. LabMonster

    LabMonster Clinically relevant. 10+ Year Member

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    Yesterday I wrote this "Every day I meet at least one patient that makes it all worthwhile - but it ain't easy." Today, again, I had my one patient.

    This lady was alive when she left home, had chest pain but unresponsive at the hospital. She was dead at our door, probably heart attack (MI and Vfib arrest) but she is alive now. We didn't fix her, but we lifted her from the river Styx. I'm not sure if she'll walk and remember her kids birthdays - but she may live, and she may open her eyes on a another beautiful sunrise. She may see her husbands smile again. This case, is why we do this.
     
  29. Esquire

    Esquire 7+ Year Member

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    The average person has a better shot at making $200,000+ in medicine than in business. If you believe you can make more money in business than EM, you should pick up a few extra night shifts, stack that paper, and launch your IPO, enroll at Wharton, start that trash hauling biz, etc.

    Doctors are jaded because they are 18 year olds who study and work away their twenties, and sometimes some of their thirties, without ever having experienced a job with significant responsibility that deals with bureaucracy and the general public. The jadedness is also because most doctors choose their specialty with the limited insight of a mid-twenties person and go solely for what seems interesting, exciting, noble, and/or high paying.

    But most young people are not aware of the mundane criteria that have a high correlation with long term job satisfaction: autonomy, low medicaid/care payor mix, healthy/younger/more affluent patient population, non-hospital based, malpractice risk, etc.

    Older doctors are jaded because they used to make $$$$. Now they make $$.
     
    PhoenixFire and W19 like this.
  30. W19

    W19 SDN Gold Donor Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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    Last edited: 09.26.14
  31. Lawgiver

    Lawgiver Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    have you not had a job? what does everyone seem to do, and everyone else pretend to do even if they dont feel that way, just to fit in? Complain.
     
  32. LabMonster

    LabMonster Clinically relevant. 10+ Year Member

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    I'm not an "older doctor" and I'm not sure that was directed at me, but I understand. Likewise, I didn't pick medicine as a primary career out of college. Medicine was a back-up of sorts. I already had a job making decent money. I have also done many manual labor jobs, landscaping, landscaping foreman, tree trimming and removal, and the most important job anyone in healthcare should do prior to medicine: foodservice. If you can handle serving/cooking, you should handle the (acute pressures) of medicine well.

    I'm not sure many older physicians are jaded about making $$ vs $$$$. I think that is an unfair generalization. Some physicians, and I think primary care is a great example, has seen their reimbursements decline and honestly cannot afford to be in business. Specialties typically have a better balance sheet for many reasons - ergo the reason for pursuing them, but that doesn't necessarily affect "jadedness."

    For me, and for many of my colleagues, the system contributes to a sense of dysequilibrium at work: resources, patient responsibilities, structure of the medical complex, more specialty referrals, limited time spent with patients, patient satisfaction numbers etc etc.

    Some of us have always worked hard, had to deal with public relations, and we actually chose our specialties on what we thought would fit our skill sets and personalities best - but the system is broken. Swimming against the current and current culture (i.e. medicine can fix all with one pill) one will get tired - and no one can argue against that.

    My comment that money shouldn't be an option isn't targeted against medicine, in an earlier post, I said physicians make more than most people in the world. It's not an efficient means of money making which is evident from data breaking down our debt versus earning. We do make good money, and I didn't argue against that. The sentence: "pick up a few extra night shifts" is fairly amusing since I worked only nights until recently so I could moonlight elsewhere and then could work 20 shifts a month.

    My point in this "being jaded" thread, is that people do in fact need to be educated in what medicine in the US is prior to getting into it. It is a whitewater rapid that sucks you in, once you've decided it sounds good you can dip your toe -but that's it, but it may not meet every expectation of your ideal career.

    I've done a lot of jobs, worked pretty hard my entire life, but the highs and lows of medicine stand out as unique. I think college students are not prepared for this leap - further, they have no idea about finances. Actually, physicians have no idea about financess either. If you want to make millions and retire at 40, do not become a physician - that's not the route. We're not here to primarily make money and the numbers bear that out. Some do, but they should have gone into alternative fields.
     

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