The woes of an academic physician. “A growing number of academic physicians are stressed out and depressed because they are being pressured to treat more patients and generate more money, and they have less time for teaching and research, a report published this month concludes.”

All I can say is – welcome to the real world. (via Health Care Renewal)

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  • Anonymous

    Orac at Respectful Insolence has a problem with this comment, and so do I. I was in academic medicine for 14 years, with reasonable success,and with significant responsibilities in teaching, research, and patient care. I’m now in private practice, and my job is much less stressful now than it was then. I saw lots of patients in the academic medical center, but this activity was not only sabotaged by poor business practices and parasitized by numerous layers of administration, but actually prevented me from doing the parts of my job (i.e. research, writing, and speaking) that garnered positive evaluations and promotions. Those of us who cared about teaching, and spent time on it, were further handicapped. The last straw came when I had to take vacation time in order to be able to turn my beeper off to write a grant application. I had the grant for less than a year before giving it back and coming out into private practice. In the “real world” I have more control, more free time, and fewer beefs. The relationship between my effort and my return is much more direct. I’m seeing my family more, and even getting some semi-regular exercise for the first time in many years. Those private practitioners who seem to believe that academic physicians are somehow shielded from the harsh realities of working for a living ought to try life in the “ivory tower” sometime. I think they would rapidly gain more appreciation for life in the “real world”.

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