Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Should you leave clinical medicine?

If you're thinking about leaving the world of clinical medicine, consider the following:
  • Once you leave, it may be virtually impossible to go back (this ultimately depends on your specialty and your willingness to go through a formal re-entry program).
  • In general, there is more stability in clinical jobs compared to non-clinical jobs (especially during a recession).
  • Health care may go through a major reform, but reform could also dramatically impact the pharmaceutical and device industry.
  • You may have to accept a reduction in salary to switch from a clinical career to a non-clinical career (at least initially).
  • It may take over 12 months before you successfully transition to a non-clinical job.
  • You're probably going to be expected to generate many electronic documents (deliverables) in a non-clinical job. How strong are your computer skills?
  • You may be required to travel if you accept a non-clinical job. Are you willing and able to travel frequently for business trips?
  • Will you miss clinical medicine?
  • Are you willing to report to someone who has less training/education? Will you have any objections if your boss is younger? What if your boss is a nurse or a pharmacist? (I'm not trying to generalize, but some men do have trouble following instructions from a woman. Plus in certain cultures, it can be very difficult for an older person to take orders from a younger boss).
  • Are you 100% certain that you'll be happier working in a non-clinical setting?
  • Will you have any type of regrets if you leave clinical medicine?
So, are you ready to make a decision about leaving clinical medicine? If you're not certain, perhaps you should speak with a career coach/counselor who can help you evaluate your unique situation. Find a Non-Clinical Physician Mentor

1 comment:

  1. Please also realize that you will lose much of your autonomy. You will often need to get approval to do things. Business decisions are typically made with the consensus of a group of more senior leaders.