33% of doctors moonlight
38% of cardiologists take up extra weekend work
A 2013 annual survey has revealed that 33% of American doctors moonlight outside of their usual practices, with the majority being 50 to 54 years old.
The Medical Economics survey found that the main reasons for taking on secondary work included wanting to vary their working lives, the ability to earn additional income, the desire to do public service as well as diversify their current skills. Although the assumption is that many new doctors pick up moonlighting as a way of paying off student debt, FiercePraticalManagement report that this trend is in fact waning, with the age group most likely to have a secondary income being those aged between 50 and 54. The second most popular age range was 45 to 49, followed by 55 to 59 and 60 to 64. It has been suggested that this new trend is for older doctors to get part time work in place in preparation for retirement or semi-retirement.
Creating extra income
Renal and Urology News claim that more men have a secondary income than women, with doctors in rural communities reporting that they earn additional income more often than those in inner cities and urban areas. The doctors who recorded higher levels of income also experienced higher patient volumes, with these providers taking on extra hospital work, consulting, clinical trials and locum placements.
The survey showed the following specialty breakdown for doctors with a secondary income:
- 25% were paediatricians
- 27% were gastroenterologists
- 35% were internists
- 36% were family medicine doctors or GP’s
- 38% were cardiologists
- 40% were hospitalists
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