Professional career paths
Many physicians have considered exploring non-traditional career paths. Yet, physicians often view a non-clinical career transition as a major life decision. This is in stark contrast to other highly qualified professionals. The majority of attorneys do not practice trial law and this is not typically thought of as a colossal decision. A significant proportion of nurses transition from one type of job to another, frequently taking leadership roles in health care, a move often viewed as a career advancement. PhDs regularly have multifaceted careers involving a combination of research, teaching, and administrative positions in the scientific and business aspects of industry. These professionals often view different roles as a professional continuum, rather than as 'leaving.' Yet doctors of medicine more often perceive a career shift as a tremendous undertaking, requiring great consideration, and sometimes even justification.
Lack of clear direction
One of the many reasons for the different attitudes regarding career transitions for doctors in comparison to other similar professionals is the lack of clear direction and openness when it comes to discussing the options available for medical doctors. In fact, there are a surprising number of alternative jobs and roles for qualified physicians, dentists, chiropractors and podiatrists. Here is a list of over 50 nonclinical health care jobs. Physicians can be leaders, innovators, business executives, directors, speakers and authors. A physician's career can undergo a continuum of different roles, each with new responsibilities and greater influence than the last.
When doctors who want to change direction learn about the alternatives and the right routes to achieve their goals, non-clinical physicians can move the course of medicine in the right direction for patients and for practicing physicians. The physician career pathway may not always involve exclusively clinical practice. Doctors who are itching for a change can have a tremendously positive impact on health care and on the world as a whole while achieving new career goals.
Find out if you need to change your career path by re-evaluating your goals and learn how to make the transition if that is the right course of action for you.
Non-clinical work is undoubtedly becoming a direction that more and more young physicians want to take. Given the lack of formal preparation for this path, if you are considering a non-clinical job at any time in the future, you must take the initiative to understand what you have to do to best position yourself for a job in the medical field that is not centered on patient care. Explore nonclinicaldoctors.com and Careers Beyond Clinical Medicine to learn where non-clinical jobs are and to become the best candidate for a nonclinical position.