An annual survey from Medscape and Web M.D. revealed some shocking information about doctor’s careers. Approximately 24,000 doctors were polled, and only 41% said that they would choose the same specialty, given the choice to do it all again, and only 25% would choose the same type of practice. This is a fairly low satisfaction rate, and somewhat disheartening considering that more than 11 years of education gets sunk into a doctor’s career. Clearly, choosing a compatible practice is important. If you are pursuing a career in medicine, and you can’t make up your mind which career path to choose, then it is worth carefully considering the differences between a private practice, and the urgent care setting.
Family Medicine Physicians in Private Practice
A general family doctor treats a wide variety of patients. In a private practice setting, you might be the only primary care physician on staff, when you own the practice for yourself, or you might work with other family medicine physicians to treat families in your community. The Centers for Disease Control cite that a cough is the most common reason for a doctors appointment in the United States. As a family medicine physician, you will likely treat a lot of common illnesses and infections. In this practice setting, you might know a patient from the day they are born, and handle their primary care on through the time that person has their own children.
Doctor’s Employment at Urgent Care
While family medicine physicians will rarely, if ever, see a patient experiencing an emergency, doctors at walk in clinics are more likely to see individuals with broken bones, strains, and sprains. An urgent care facility may be open 24 hours a day, or might simply have extended hours for nights and weekends. Whatever the hours are, you will see more patients in an urgent care setting, and hopefully resolve their immediate needs quickly. In the U.S., average waiting room time is 19 minutes, but an urgent care center is likely to see faster patient turnaround.
Once you have tailored your education and work experience around a particular setting, and you are left to choose an actual facility to seek employment at, you can use patient reviews to get an idea of which facilities employ doctors with similar standards. The urgent care center is considered to be an ideal place for doctors who want something that is inbetween emergency medicine, and primary care. Meanwhile, a private practice setting allows for doctors to develop closer, ongoing relationships with their patients and their families. Whichever path you choose, there will be plenty of opportunities to use your talents in medicine to serve those in need. Links like this.