May 14, 2020
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I am wrapping up my PGY-1 year and am excited to start my dedicated PM&R training. In thinking about what I want my career to look like, re: possible fellowships/work setting, I am also starting to build my life with my significant other. He is in the military, has been very successful in his career, and plans to spend his full 20 years. This may unfortunately mean that he will have at least one, possibly several location changes in the ~6 years between when I graduate residency and when he hits his 20 years.

As far as my career goals, I see myself preferring inpatient rehab. I enjoy procedures, but pain medicine is not for me, so it would likely be in the realm of EMG/general MSK/peripheral joint injections/spasticity management (probably in an outpatient setting?). Unless I am particularly taken by cancer rehab or TBI/SCI, I think I would not want to further subspecialize, and just go into the workforce.

I feel like most of what I see career-wise involves establishing at a practice and building your presence over time, but what are my options if I know that may not be the case for me for a (relatively) short amount of time after graduating residency?

My preference would be inpatient, but would inpatient jobs take me if they knew I'd only be there for maybe 2-3 years? Could I bounce around VAs and be able to go back to the private world if I so choose, once I'm not chained to a military base? Or maybe join the subacute consult life like @PMR2008? I realize it's not optimal, but I'm wondering if any of you have thoughts on what would be the least... suboptimal, if that makes sense. Thank you for your time!
 
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j4pac

Prior Flight Surgeon PM&R attending guy
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By significant other, do you mean spouse or boyfriend? Regarding the military, it matters.
 
May 14, 2020
3
0
By significant other, do you mean spouse or boyfriend? Regarding the military, it matters.
At this time, boyfriend. I was under the impression it would not change how frequently he would be PCS'd, just if he would get extra money for "family separation" if he does and I cannot move with him. Would it change my employment prospects if we were married?

Even if us being married means that he would have extra leverage to not be PCS'd, his current trajectory sets him up to achieve a longstanding goal of his, and I want to be able to facilitate that for him by moving, if the opportunity arises.
 
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DMBandFan86

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Most residents tend to change what they thought they wanted to do before starting residency. But it is great to be thinking ahead about the job market. Would give a good 6 month block on inpatient service to decide if you want to do that for your career and compare it to the outpatient environment and procedures. Of course you can always do both.

There are many ways you can work: hospital/group employee, VA, independent contractor, Locums/temp jobs, etc. If you choose to be an independent contractor then you can make your own hours and have more flexibility when moving. However with the military there is always some uncertainty. They may make you move several times over a career or not. I'd personally just go for whatever job you want and deal with any deployments or relocations when they come up.
 

j4pac

Prior Flight Surgeon PM&R attending guy
10+ Year Member
Aug 22, 2005
2,555
2,452
www.med.navy.mil
At this time, boyfriend. I was under the impression it would not change how frequently he would be PCS'd, just if he would get extra money for "family separation" if he does and I cannot move with him. Would it change my employment prospects if we were married?

Even if us being married means that he would have extra leverage to not be PCS'd, his current trajectory sets him up to achieve a longstanding goal of his, and I want to be able to facilitate that for him by moving, if the opportunity arises.
certainly I wouldn’t marry for some potential and remote chance that it has to help you. When it comes to the VA, being prior service military or having a spouse in the military could help.

If I were in your shoes, I’d do what it takes to fulfill your career goals. It’s too difficult to say whether or not a fellowship would help or hurt your ability to collocate. I think that it is very important that you’re flexible when the time comes. Let’s say that you fall in love with SCI and go that route. Just be aware that there are only a few SCI jobs in the entire country. You may need to settle for a more general job that may not allow much opportunity for your fellowship.
 
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