Recently, I've read a few comments from readers on other blogs/sites who feel that doctors make too much money. Examples:
1. At KevinMD, a reader wrote:
"I was on your web site. As a patient with unsolved rare medical problems and also as one with wrongful diagnoses and surgery, I have no sympathy for most doctors. In the words of a very fine doctor that I now have, 'most doctors are not worth a ----, because their main concern is money and not their patients' health.'
When doctors live in millionaire neighborhoods, you had better believe there is a definite conflict of interest on the patients' part. I have seen more than my share of bitchy doctors who spend less than 5 minutes of quality time learning about their patient. The older I get, the less I am valued as a human being and patient."
"Doctors make absorbent [sic] amounts of money for the work they actually do. Sure it is intense from a load perspective, however, it's not dangerous by any means, your work environment is very comfortable, and you have loads of job security, mobility and flexibility. So yes you have to sacrifice up front a few years to make 5 times the national wage average. Giving up 5-10 years for a 5x multiple in wage over your working life is a small sacrifice. I find it funny doctors complain about having to sacrifice a few years when you get a much better life than the rest of society out of it. Stop being hypocritical and take a hard look at your life some time. I personally would like to see a better policy put in place that would further protect doctors from lawsuits with the trade off for a ceiling on doctor pay (similar to the systems in the UK and Canada). Nobody deserves to make 5, 10 or 20 times the national average on pay unless they are truly special and add considerable value to mankind. Just because you went to school for 5 extra years hardly justifies that. The rest of the world does not compensate doctors in such a way and neither should we. It's a job and you should earn your money and quit complaining about compensation until you actually earn that additional value through innovation and expertise. You are no expert just out of school and should not be compensated as such."
- Doctors make a lot of money
- Doctors have to undergo a long training and work long hours, but the money they make is more than worth it
- Doctors complain about having to see patients, and their concern for getting paid to do so compromises their bedside manner/quality of care
- Part One: Introduction and Assumptions (this post)
- Part Two: Where it All begins--Med School Debt
- Part Three: Chosen Luxuries, an examination of spending money
- Part Four: The Cost of Living, if you can call it living
- Part Five: the Reality of Retirement--planning for the future
- Part Six: Real-life Income scenarios
- Part Seven: What can we do? Improbable solutions
The order and contents may change as I work on this series, but that's the rough outline. I haven't reviewed all my personal data at this point, so you'll be discovering the numbers along with me. I hope this series will inspire some dialogue about the state of things for real working physicians. Comments, email, and all other participation from others will be welcome.