< Healthcare Industry Insights Archives - Jackson Physician Search

Five Reasons Why Doctors Search For a New Job

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If you pay any attention at all to the stock market or financial news, you already know that the economy is booming and the outlook for jobs is better than it has been in decades.  The same can be said for physicians, as the healthcare industry is grappling with filling open positions around the country.  If you are a physician who has not been considering finding a new job, maybe now is the right time to start looking for a new place to practice.  Let’s take a look at five reasons why Doctors search for a new job to see if any of them apply to your situation.

Experiencing feelings of burnout.

At least 50% of all doctors report feelings of burnout, with some specialties like critical care and emergency medicine slightly higher.  If you are one of those physicians experiencing burnout without a solution or help from the administration on the horizon, now is the time to explore making changes.  Burnout doesn’t just get better by itself. Instead, it takes making changes in your life, or organizational changes to alleviate some of the stressors, or finding a new job that already has processes in place to help physicians avoid burnout.

Feeling a sense of complacency.

You probably didn’t choose to practice medicine because you wanted to “punch a clock.” If you are like most, you were drawn to the excitement of medicine.  Studying different ways to treat illnesses and ailments, and digging into the science of medicine was the attraction.  If you have found that your excitement and passion is waning, and you are simply going through the motions, you have become complacent.  Finding a new job may be just the cure for your “punching the clock” blues.  A new location, new management, new ideas, even new patients can help you inject just enough discomfort into your routine to make your job fun again.

You need to keep learning and growing.

Similar to the complacency rut, when you became a physician, you went to school for a long time.  It was worth it because you knew that in the end, you would have a career and a sense of accomplishment. No matter what career people choose, most of us want to continue to grow personally and professionally.  If you are in a position that is not affording you the opportunity to grow, do research, even practice abroad occasionally, then it might be time to find an employer who wants those things for you.

Not fitting in anymore.

Workplace culture has been a focal point for successful companies for a very long time.  Not surprisingly, the healthcare industry has been behind the curve on understanding the importance of how important culture and fit is for attracting and retaining the best talent.  In healthcare, we have all read about and even experienced the rash of mergers and acquisitions that the industry is experiencing.  These developments are not always good for workplace culture.  When new leadership comes in, often times the culture and communication changes and leads to good people seeking new environs.

Work and life are out of balance.

We all want balance in our life.  As a physician, you know there will be some late nights or the occasional disruption to your social calendar, but you also probably want to have some control over it. Predictable hours, minimal call schedules (if any), and untouchable vacation and personal time should be on your short list to ensure that you can achieve the work/life balance that is so critical to being at your best.  Achieving that is no longer a pipe dream. Hospitals and health systems know that they no longer have the upper hand in physician recruitment and have been much more willing to offer attractive incentives to physician candidates.

Jackson Physician Search has the national reach and healthcare industry experience to help you find your perfect job.  To find out what we can do for your career, contact one of our recruitment professionals today.

Lifting the Regulatory Burden on Physicians

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The regulatory burden on physicians and others on the front lines of healthcare is intensifying. A new, comprehensive study echoes growing frustration with the amount of time providers spend pushing paper rather than treating patients.

According to the Medical Group Management Association’s 2018 Survey, an overwhelming 86% of respondents reported an increase in regulatory burden over the past 12 months. An even larger percentage (94%) said a reduction in regulatory burden would allow more resources to be allocated toward patient care.

The MGMA report is further evidence that regulatory overload has been mounting. Previously, the 2016 Jackson Healthcare Physician Trends Survey, revealed that 60% of physicians reported more administrative work under the Affordable Care Act, resulting in less time with patients. Medscape has reported that 57% of physicians spend more than 10 hours per week on paperwork, and numerous studies have found that administrative work contributes to physician stress and burnout.

This burden comes with a cost. An analysis by the American Hospital Association shows that providers spend nearly $39 billion a year solely on administrative activities related to regulatory compliance. An average-sized hospital dedicates 59 full-time equivalents (FTEs) to regulatory compliance. one-quarter of those employees are physicians, nurses and other health professionals who would otherwise be caring for patients.

Impact on Physicians in the Future

The administrative overload makes the challenge of recruiting and retaining physicians more daunting. According to a recent survey, regulations are among the top causes of physician burnout. And, 54% said increased administrative burden contributes to the changes in healthcare that are likely to lead them to retire over the next five years. Seven out of 10 are unwilling to recommend healthcare as a profession, adding to the concerns of young people about entering medicine.

What You Can Do to Lessen the Overload

Here are the steps you can take to counteract trends that may prompt physicians to choose early retirement or cause young people to avoid medicine because of concerns that paperwork will impact work/life balance or detract from patient care:

However, there are steps you can take to counteract these trends:

  • Embrace the role of physician assistants and nurse practitioners in your practices.
  • Implement telemedicine solutions to reach more patients more efficiently
  • Utilize clinical scribes to facilitate documentation, while the provider focuses on the patient
  • Evaluate your electronic health record systems to ensure they are compatible with workflow
  • Guard against burnout by making work/life balance a reality and offering interventions, as needed
  • Educate elected officials about the impact on patients, healthcare workers and the community

Use your Voice and Vote

With healthcare representing the largest economic driver in many communities, administrators and trustees have access to their congressional representatives and the responsibility to place the issue of regulatory relief on the top of their agendas.

As voters, everyone – administrators, providers, staff and patients – can make our voices heard at the ballot box. Take an opportunity to examine your congressional representatives’ position on these issues and support those who understand the severity of the burden and act on regulatory relief.

While the wheels of government turn slowly, it is important to listen to physicians and other providers and manage those things under you control. Understanding their daily experience and frustrations will lead to solutions that maximize patient care time, ensure they are doing work “at the top of their license,” and encourage committed individuals to choose – and stay in – medicine as the satisfying profession it is meant to be.

Contact us to explore how you can position your organization to find and keep physicians in a satisfying practice.

The Challenges of Urban Physician Recruitment

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While the expansion of community-based facilities is a welcome development for inner cities and rural settings where most are located, it is not without challenges.  The National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) reports that 95% of health centers have a clinical vacancy and 70% are reporting a physician vacancy.  These trends are even more concerning when you consider that by the year 2020, CHC’s are expected to be managing the care of 35 million patients. Unfortunately, this is becoming the new reality for community health centers, and it is forcing administrators to rethink the FQHC model and adapt to become more competitive in recruitment and retention.

In the past, community health centers could utilize desirable work schedules and quality of life incentives to attract physicians to practice there. Typically, CHC’s would offer attractive schedules, little to no call, better work/life balance and other similar enticements.  Whether it was the slower pace of a quiet rural community or a consistent 9 to 5 schedule in an urban setting, physicians would often forgo some salary in exchange for quality of life.  Today, physician recruitment and retention is so competitive, that CHC’s no longer have exclusivity with convenient work schedules, limited call, and other attractive incentives.  Large hospitals and major health systems have the financial resources to not only offer salary incentives, but student loan forgiveness, favorable work schedules, and so much more that smaller CHCs cannot compete against.

All of these developments are increasingly putting more and more pressure on CHC administrators to adapt.  Many health centers are expanding partnerships and residency programs with local universities to introduce graduating physicians to their systems and potentially attract them to stay on after graduation. Another strategy has been to become even more creative in making work schedules as flexible as possible, including generous leave packages, allowing physicians to focus on limited types of preferred services, part-time work, and more. These types of creative solutions are made possible through the increased use of nurse practitioners.

Another advantage that community health centers may have over large systems is a close-knit sense of family and teamwork.  By promoting the values and culture of the CHC, administrators are able to attract like-minded physician candidates. CHC’s are rebranding their organizations, enhancing their social media messaging and online presence, and ensuring that candidates are a good fit culturally and have similar values to the organization.

There is no magic solution to physician recruitment for small urban and rural community health centers.  It takes a combination of best practices to ensure that not only are the right candidates aware of vacancies but that no stone is left unturned in their pursuit.  This includes having a network of relationships throughout the community acting as an extension of your recruitment team. Whether it is to learn about family members who may be pursuing a career in healthcare, or currently practicing clinicians who may want to return home to be closer to family and friends, the local network is a goldmine for information.

Jackson Physician Search has the expertise and nationwide reach to help solve even the most challenging physician and advanced practice recruiting situations. To find out more, contact a recruitment professional today.

Focus on Fit: A Cultural Blueprint for Successful Physician Recruitment

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This presentation, given by our CEO at the 2018 MGMA Annual Meeting, explains why cultural fit is so important and how to create a physician recruitment blueprint that focuses on fit.

Focus on Fit A Cultural Blueprint for Successful Physician Recruitment

Focus on Fit: A Cultural Blueprint for Successful Physician Recruitment

Learning Objectives

  • Analyze the motivations and personal needs of physicians, advanced providers and their families
  • Outline a blueprint for a sustainable culture that accelerates recruitment and fosters retention
  • Differentiate their organization in the best marketplace through recognition as a best place to work

Presentation

  • Culture: What and Why?
  • Examples
  • How To’s

Pathway to Culture as a Competitive Advantage

Align-Assess-Design-Evolve-Sustain

  1. Apply for Certification as a Great Place to Work
  2. Survey Employees – Get Results
  3. Interpret Results – Tie quantitative business results to outcomes
  4. Share Results with Leaders – Set up an Executive Insights Session to help your leaders understand results and align around next steps
  5. Reflect & Respond to Employees – Execute a communication plan that builds trust
  6. Confirm Focus Areas – Collect additional insight through focus groups, interviews, or a customized full census or pulse survey
  7. Take Action – Design a support and accountability plan to drive change

 Evaluating Best Workplaces

For All – A great workplace for everyone regardless of who you are or what you do in your company.

Innovation – A culture that enables a company to continuously improve, adapt quickly, and generate game-changing opportunities.

Executive Team Effectiveness – A high functioning executive leadership team that inspires followership and strategic cohesion at every level of the business.

 

Culture and Physician Retention

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Imagine a workplace where medical professionals at all levels are highly respectful.

Too many hospitals today are losing valued physicians due to toxic environments. A recent study estimates that “for hospital medicine, the overall cost of turnover is probably at least $400,000 per provider and could easily be $600,000 or more”.

The relationship between culture and physician retention is straightforward. Making a smart hiring decision is just the beginning. Once a physician is recruited, onboarded and in place, the challenge to keep them begins.

Jackson Physician Search did a study in 2016 (The Engagement Gap) revealing a significant difference in how executives and physicians rated their workplace culture.

One example of a gap between physicians and executives revealed their attitudes when asked their level of agreement with the following item:

“Always treats physicians with respect”

  • 48% of physicians agreed
  • 78% of executives agreed

Conflict and communication breakdowns are inevitable.

Toxic cultures

What exactly is a toxic culture? Based on my research working with physicians, physician executives, hospital executives, and support teams, toxic cultures often include:

  • Punitive, old-school leadership
  • People are judged quickly, labeled and “singled out”
  • Factions/cliques are strong and you see “in-groups” versus “out-groups”
  • Strong, long-held beliefs about “right and wrong” regarding how physicians should manage patients and nurse practitioners
  • Senior-level physicians or leaders prone to outbursts, yelling, profanity, name-calling and throwing things, creating an intimidating environment
  • Ineffective leadership skills at the highest levels (poor management skills)
  • Unclear vision and performance expectations
  • Low-trust issues; gossip is rampant
  • Power struggles

I’ve observed cultures first hand through my consulting and executive coaching. I’ve conducted 360 leader assessments, including verbal interviews with bosses, peers and direct reports of executives/physicians in healthcare organizations.

I’ve also conducted culture assessments and gained an in-depth look at the inner workings of how things get done behind the scenes.

Culture Assessment

Few organizations stop to assess their culture. The cost of ignoring a toxic culture is devastating in terms of turnover, morale and profitability. Patient care also suffers as a result.

Where do you begin to measure your organization’s culture?

Finding a valid and reliable assessment tool is the first step. I prefer an assessment tool called “LEA Culture Survey” from MRG. The result of the assessment is a report that paints a clear picture of “what it’s like to work here”. Leaders shape the culture. They determine what gets noticed, rewarded . . . and in many cases what gets ignored or even punished.

I facilitate the culture assessment process using the following 10 steps:

  1. Identify a sponsor and/or culture project team
  2. Identify critical leadership practices for achieving the mission
  3. Select the best culture assessment (online preferred)
  4. Communicate to all what’s coming and how they’ll be involved
  5. Administer online culture assessment
  6. Preview results with culture project team
  7. Plan roll-out of results to all; hold group feedback sessions
  8. Explain next steps and form action teams
  9. Close the gaps to reach top workplace benchmarks
  10. Re-survey in 12 – 18 months

Invest in your most valuable resource—your people. Rather than guess at what it’s like to work in your organization—measure it. Help shape the culture that helps you achieve your mission.

 

Kathy Cooperman is President and Founder of KC Leadership Consulting, LLC. She specializes in Leadership Development through executive coaching, consulting and facilitation. Her passion is helping organizations accelerate excellence in their leaders—engaging everyone to work together to achieve the business strategy while applying the core principals of Positive Psychology.

Focus On Culture To Build the Perfect Team

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Are you having staffing issues and problems with turnover?  Does the cost of constantly recruiting physicians get brought up at every meeting?  If either of these situations sound familiar, your organization might have a culture problem. There is a growing amount of discussion regarding culture and fit, and how physicians today are placing more emphasis on finding a workplace that is aligned with their values.  The working professional’s website, LinkedIn, sponsored research into the role culture and fit play in workplace satisfaction and retention.

Do you know what is most important to your physician team?  If you are operating under dated assumptions, you would probably say it’s all about the money.  In today’s healthcare environment, physicians who are unhappy with their current situation have ample opportunities to move on and find a position with more control over their work/life balance and an environment that is consistent with their values. According to LinkedIn, 70% of professionals today would not work at a leading organization if it meant tolerating a bad workplace culture. If you think you can buy their happiness and loyalty, think again. An impressive 65% of survey respondents are willing to put up with lower pay if it means they can work in a better environment.

As you already know, physicians are suffering from burnout in record numbers. To stem the churn, administrators need to gain a better understanding of what type of culture exists currently, and what they envision for the future.  A good place to start is by reviewing a study conducted by Jackson Physician Search, The Engagement Gap. The results indicate a vast difference between what physicians believe about the workplace and what the executives believe. For example, less than 50% of physicians believe they are being treated fairly, while almost 70% of executives believe that their doctors are treated fairly.  In that same vein, only 48% of physicians feel they are always treated with respect, while 78% of executives feel that physicians are treated respectfully.  One area where doctors and administrators agree is that the majority of both groups admit that communication needs to be improved.

Once the culture and types of behaviors needed to support and foster a better work environment are understood, leadership must clearly communicate the message throughout the organization via words AND actions. None of this happens overnight in any workplace, but over time, tangible results are visible through improved performance, stronger physician engagement, and more successful recruitment and retention.

For more information about how Jackson Physician Search can help you find and retain qualified physicians and advanced practice professionals that fit within your culture and values, contact one of our experienced healthcare recruitment professionals today.

The Link Between Physician Burnout and Cultural Fit

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Physicians today are suffering the effects of burnout at higher rates than ever before.  If someone were to make an assumption about what is causing physician dissatisfaction and burnout, compensation might be at the top of your list, but you would be incorrect. According to the Medscape National Physician Burnout & Depression Report 2018, compensation was fifth on the list of burnout contributors.  By taking a close look at the survey we see that many of the factors that are contributing to physician stress and burnout can be attributed to organizational culture. Physicians are saying the issues that are contributing to burnout include being bogged down with bureaucratic tasks, unmanageable work schedules, lack of respect and awareness from administrators, and issues with electronic health records.

Some of the contributors to burnout listed by survey respondents include bureaucratic tasks, lack of respect from the administration, lack of autonomy, feeling like a cog in the wheel, and emphasis on profits over patients, among others. An organizational culture that promotes engagement, respect, communication, fairness, etc. makes for a healthier environment for staff and administrators alike.

Is culture really that much of a factor? The answer is a resounding yes.  According to a research study conducted for LinkedIn, 70% of professionals in the United States indicated that they would not work at a leading organization if it meant having to deal with bad workplace culture.  Another 65% of respondents would accept lower compensation if they were working in a great environment.

As a physician, you have options in this evolving healthcare industry.  If you are unhappy in your current position or feel that you tolerate working in an environment that is not aligned with your values, you probably want to reassess your surroundings. Proactive healthcare organizations are working through the process of understanding their culture and finding employees who will fit.

There are some simple questions you can ask yourself to see if culture is contributing to feelings of burnout or dissatisfaction.

  • Do you feel there is a shared mission that is clearly defined and followed at every level of your organization?
  • Are behaviors and corporate decisions aligned with your own personal values?
  • Is communication transparent from top to bottom?
  • Does the organization value things like work/life balance and demonstrate a commitment to the well-being of the employees?

Answering those four simple questions, and you will notice that none involved compensation, should give you an idea of whether or not it is time to seek new opportunities.  If you have never had the opportunity to work in an environment that fosters a strong organizational culture, you don’t know how much of an impact it has on your personal fulfillment, job satisfaction, and passion for the practice of medicine.

To see for yourself how finding a cultural fit can help you take your career to the next level, speak with a Jackson Physician Search recruitment professional today. There are available opportunities locally and across the country, let us help you find your perfect fit.

Community Health Center Physician Recruitment Checklist

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The growing demand for affordable primary care, especially among underserved patient populations, has fueled the need for innovative solutions to the most pressing health care issues. National Health Centers Week raises awareness about the mission and accomplishments of America’s health centers to reach beyond the walls of conventional medicine and provide quality health care in the context of the individual, family, and community.

But, the shortage of physicians and advanced practice providers is especially acute for community health centers. Practice leaders are looking for a special breed of clinician who are:

  • Great listeners, innovative thinkers, and team players.
  • Enthusiastic about caring for patients whose social, educational, family and community environment may adversely affect their health and well-being.

Get ready to recruit into this challenging setting by adopting a 30-point checklist which will strengthen your recruitment and retention efforts. It will enhance your chances of hiring and keeping providers who are a great fit and will embrace your practice opportunities in rural or urban communities.

These four sections highlight how to be a “recruitment ready” FQHC and are covered in more detail on the full checklist:

 

Lay a Strong Pre-Search Foundation

Clearly define and establish the groundwork for the position and be ready to make a strong offer to the ideal candidate. The Pre-search Checklist covers key aspects of planning that create an efficient and successful recruiting process. It covers the essentials such as where they will practice, consensus on what qualities and skills you require, how they will be paid, and how much is available for incentives and loan repayment assistance.

Prepare the Interview Team

The best game plan fails if even one team member fumbles in their interview team responsibilities. That’s why almost every point on the Interview Checklist starts with “who.” From identifying who will develop the itinerary to who will share the organization’s vision, you must customize each interview to reflect the needs and motivations of the candidate, while putting your best foot forward. Leave no aspect of the site visits to chance – because you only get one – to make a lasting impression on your candidate.

Plan for Post-interview Follow-up

Best practices dictate that you commit to a firm and timely schedule for delivering a verbal offer, followed by the contract. The parameters and process for making the hiring decision and extending the offer should be planned well in advance. Following the Post-interview Checklist will help you plan for and deliver a rapid response. The additional benefit? Demonstrating to the candidate that your organization is serious about hiring them.

Deliver on Promises During New Provider Launch

It’s proven that long-term retention starts during recruitment and extends through onboarding and beyond. Yet, the baton is frequently dropped between the recruitment and post-hire operational teams, leaving a newly recruited provider wondering if they made the right decision. With many candidates accepting the positions more than a year before they finish training, it’s critical to establish a roadmap for keeping the provider engaged from acceptance through onboarding. The New Provider Launch Checklist outlines key requirements for successfully ramping your physicians and advanced practitioners into practice and ensuring their families are welcomed in the community from day one.

 

Download the full 30-point “Ready to Recruit Checklist” for community health centers, and contact us for more help in making your community health center’s recruitment efforts successful.

Read Between the Lines to Understand the 2018 Physician Compensation Surveys

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Each year, a variety of physician salary surveys are published with varying degrees of detail and context. Charts and tables deliver a wealth of information, but you need to read between the lines to understand how each report defines compensation and the larger trends driving it.

Here is a brief overview of recently published surveys to get you started.

Modern Healthcare Physician Compensation Survey

This leading media source publishes a round-up of compensation data for 23 specialties as reported by 12 organizations, from recruitment and consulting firms to industry associations. This three-page survey reports average starting salaries, rather than average incomes. Salary and bonuses are included, but insurance, stock options, and benefits are not. Data points include:

  • Average cash compensation for that specialty
  • Percentage change between the current and previous year

Key Takeaways:

  • Physician pay increases appear to be slowing, possibly due to the rise in hospital employment, where salary (vs. bonuses) make up most of compensation for physicians.
  • Although primary care specialties are among the lowest paid, they scored the highest average starting pay increases.
  • Emergency, internal, family, and hospital medicine physicians saw average year-to-year pay increases of more than 3%.

MGMA DataDive Provider Compensation Data

The Medical Group Management Association gathers W-2 data directly from practice managers at over 5,800 organizations nationwide, providing a dataset of approximately 136,000 providers. Their data offers a complete picture of over 140 physician specialties based upon practice size, region, metropolitan statistical area and more. Benchmarks include:

  • Compensation – Including total pay, bonus/incentives, retirement and more
  • Productivity – Work RVUs, total RVUs, professional collections and charges
  • Benefit Metrics – Hours worked per week/year and weeks of vacation

Key Takeaways:

  • Primary care physician compensation increased by more than 10% over the past five years.
  • Depending on specialty, the difference in compensation between states can be in the range of $100,000 to $270,000.
  • Family medicine physicians saw a 12% rise in total compensation over the past five years, while their median number of work relative value units (wRVUs) remained flat. This reflects higher signing bonuses, continuing medical education stipends, relocation reimbursement and other cash incentives to attract and retain physicians.

AMGA Medical Group Compensation and Productivity Survey

The American Medical Group Association survey represents more than 105,000 clinical providers. Participants are primarily large multispecialty medical groups and integrated health systems. The average number of providers per participant group was approximately 380. Data includes:

  • Compensation
  • Net collections
  • Work RVUs
  • Compensation-to-productivity ratios

Key Takeaways:

  • Although compensation per relative value unit (work RVU) was higher than average, 2017 was the first-year physician compensation increased by less than 2% in over a decade.
  • Compensation increased only +0.89%.
  • The national median showed a decline in physician productivity by a weighted average of -1.63%, possibly related to growing administrative burdens on providers.

Doximity Physician Compensation Report

Doximity is known as the largest medical social network in the country – with over 70% of US doctors as verified members. Their report draws on the responses of more than 65,000 licensed U.S. doctors in 40 medical specialties. Physicians who are verified Doximity users can access an interactive salary map to drill down on compensation data combined with housing cost insights.

Their public report focuses on year-over-year trends in:

  • Physician compensation across Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs)
  • The gap in pay between male and female physicians
  • Absolute physician compensation across specialty, state, region, and gender

Key Takeaways:

  • There was a 4% increase in physician compensation nationally.
  • Less populated MSAs tend to have higher average compensation compared to larger cities.
  • The presence of large medical schools in an area ensures a stronger pipeline of doctors competing for a relatively fixed number of positions, which causes a dampening effect on compensation.

Medscape Physicians Compensation Report

Medscape is one of the most popular sources for physicians who use the report to access high-level salary trends and gauge how their peers feel about the challenges and rewards of practicing medicine. More than 20,000 physicians in 29 specialties responded to the online survey, and the results were weighted to the American Medical Association’s physician distribution by specialty. Information reported:

  • Annual Compensation by Specialty
  • Year-to-year Trends
  • Regional Averages

Key Takeaways:

  • Employed physicians comprised 69% of the respondent group versus 26% who are self-employed, with 5% not reporting.
  • Demand for specialists to help address behavioral health issues and the opioid crisis surged, highlighted by a year-to-year increase in psychiatry and physical medicine/rehabilitation.
  • Physicians cited altruistic reasons as the top three most rewarding parts of their job, with “making good money at a job I like” ranking fourth.

Physician Salary Calculator and Resource Center

To further contribute to the resources available to physicians, we offer a physician compensation resource center that includes an interactive calculator with data compiled from published industry sources, as well as proprietary data from our search assignments. Customizable calculator fields encompass the components that are typically included in a compensation package, including:

  • Benefits
  • Sign-on Bonus
  • Residency stipend
  • Relocation assistance
  • Student loan repayment
  • Bonuses for productivity and quality

The Physician Salary Calculator enables you to:

  • Easily access customized physician compensation data
  • Drill down by specialty, state, and type of location
  • Get instant results and have your report emailed to you

Your results will instantly show a competitive market-based scenario that breaks out base salary, benefits, hiring incentives and bonuses. The calculator is unique in its design for use with an offer in hand, or if you are considering relocation and want to see how far your current compensation would stretch in a different state or type of community.

In addition to the salary calculator, our resource center features relevant physician compensation articles and videos.

A Final Piece of Advice

For any practice opportunity, making an apples-to-apples comparison can be confusing. When negotiating, ask all the questions needed to fully understand the components of your compensation package. Industry insiders and experienced physician recruiters can be valuable resources. If you would like to speak to a recruiter, use the Contact Us form below.

What Physicians Can Do to Avoid Burnout

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We have all experienced feelings of burnout at different points in our career, being overwhelmed, depressed, and other negative reactions to our work.  For our nation’s physicians, according to recent surveys, these feelings of burnout are pervasive and seemingly getting worse.  In fact, in a 2018 Medscape report, almost half of physicians surveyed reported suffering from symptoms of burnout.  When a doctor is suffering from burnout, naturally the quality of patient care suffers.

The reasons for a doctor feeling the effects of burnout vary between large systems and small and differ between specialties, but common themes exist when the causes are discussed.

  • Today’s physicians will almost unanimously assert that they spend far too much of their time performing clerical tasks. A time study sponsored by the American Medical Association showed that for every hour a physician spends with patients, they spend up to two hours creating notes, documenting phone calls, ordering tests, reviewing results, and other non-patient-facing functions.
  • Physicians feel disillusioned because other tasks take away from the reasons they went to medical school in the first place. You practice medicine because of your desire to treat and help patients.
  • The added burden of clerical tasks and non-patient related activities is causing doctors to spend too much time “off the clock” and on their own time performing documentary tasks. Physicians are losing control over their personal time with family and losing the battle for life-work balance.

The extent of physician burnout is well-documented.  Across the country, hospital system leaders are finally treating it as the challenge that has become.  Let’s look at a few ways that physicians can cope with feelings of burnout.

  1. Recognize the symptoms and admit when there is a problem. Physicians are often looked at as “Superman” and “Wonder Woman” because of their heroic efforts to save lives and the commitment they have made to years of education and residency to earn their place as healthcare professionals. It is important for doctors to recognize the signs of burnout and take action.
  2. Get involved. Modern healthcare system administrators, hospital executives, and others in the “C-Suite” recognize that there is a burnout problem and most are actively working on ways to solve the problem.  Be a part of the solution and lend your voice to potential solutions.  Physician burnout will never be solved in a vacuum, and it is too critical an issue to leave it for someone else to solve.
  3. Take vacation time. When the time rolls around for your vacation, a single week is not enough to recharge your batteries. Two weeks is a more appropriate amount of time to fully disconnect from the workplace and enjoy quality time with your loved ones. You might even have the option to take a sabbatical.
  4. Diet and exercise. Doctors spend a lot of time counseling their patients that the key to a healthier life is through diet and exercise. That is such good advice, medical professionals should heed it themselves.  Medical studies have shown regular exercise can reduce feelings of stress and depression.  Further, eating healthier and balanced meals will promote better energy and help maintain ideal body weight.
  5. Talk to a mentor. Having a mentor is advisable for every type of career.  After all, it is always helpful to talk to someone who may have experienced the same things or has navigated difficult times in their career. A mentor is someone who can be used as a sounding board for ideas or just be there to listen and interject sage advice.  Holding stress or feelings of burnout inside will cause those feelings to escalate talking about them with someone is always helpful.

Physician burnout is real and finding ways to alleviate the growing problem is a concern for the entire healthcare community.  Each organization needs to understand the levels of burnout being experienced by their teams and work to determine the root cause.  Developing new systems, redesigning clinical procedures, and improving the physician work environment is going to be a team effort.