I'd love to hear from the part-time physicians out there. Even just a jot of your hours and what works for you:
If I actually get to pick my hours in an academic center -- husband has benefits and his salary is very much more primary than mine -- *if* this happens -- not to mention the obvious blessing this would show --
What are some part-timer thoughts on ideal work schedule? I'm aiming for half time or maybe less. Weeklong call about q6 weeks. I could work during school-hours only -- how many days? One full day and how many school-hour days? One of my major stressors has been morning and and afternoon child transportation, so it seems obvious my schedule should take care of this, if possible. How much alone time do I need to build in? How long will I be grateful for the amazing opportunity to see my kids off to school before I got to work and pick them up as I leave? (or, how soon will I resent the daily driving, like so many other SAHM and various working Moms)
Better to work fewer hours and add more in, or to start on the higher side and back down if needed?
Thanks to everyone... for any opinions and for your inspiration through these years
I would negotiate for as few hours as you think you ideally want. If they say no, then work more, but keep asking and if you are persistent and patient, you will get what you want. You did not say what field you practice or will practice in. I am a general pediatrician, work 15 hours per week seeing patients (one full day and two half days). In addition to this, I have an equal share of rounding (every 12 weeks), weekends (every 12 weekend), evening office hours (one to two nights per month), and call. With meetings, CME, and other extras added in, you can see how it is really more than half time! Anyway, I am moderately happy with my current arrangement. I have worked different combinations of full days and half days, my kids are school aged so I by far prefer working more half days at this point. Even though this means more driving. Well best of luck! There are several other threads in the Family and Parenting section on this exact topic, check them out.
I am an orthopod and have been lucky to find another who wanted to switch on and off with me every 2 weeks. I have a 20 month old at home now and the guy I switch on and off with is maybe 5-10 years to retirement. If you can find someone to do this with, I think it is important to have relatively similar philosophies about patient care.
Good luck with all of this!
ellie, what a neat idea for job sharing. I'm in psych, though, and patients often want their own doc
For inpatient psych, though, it might work.
I'm still kind of nervous -- choosing the mostly known vs the totally unknown (academic vs private). I've been thinking, like KPZR, that one full day and 2 half days would be pretty ideal for me. Maybe 1 full and 3 halfs. I'm not yet very productive of my slow-mornings-getting-kids-ready, but I sense in the future a little calm space might really help the child-rearing.
I initially tried one long day and 2 short days, but this was more difficult for the support staff. Also, if I was working a half-day and an 1-hour new patient didn't show, then it was really annoying. Now I am doing 2 long days, but that's hard in terms of before and after school. We really need a nanny on those days, because my husband (anesthesia) has really unpredictable hours. I've thought about the "more short days" and will push for that when they want me to work more hours.
Ohiomom-I have been part time in family med for some time and I think I now finally have a good schedule-I recommend one full day where you can stay late if need be-reason being, even if you are only scheduled for 'school hours' for example, there is always the last minute add on patient, and it sometimes builds resentment if you are always saying no. It also gives me a chance to finish my paperwork and not be running out the door to pick up kids....
Also, keep in mind the patient phone calls, paperwork to sign, etc. If you are not in the office your partners have to deal with it. I find for me I need to be in the office at least three separate days during the week to feel that I am no burdening my partners with this stuff, and my office staff knows they can call me on my day off for emergencies or quick questions-they respect this and don't call most of the time. My office mate will also call or text me if a patient of mine is seen and she has a question-like about narc refills or something. We have an EMR which also helps, I generally run my messages on my off day at night. Takes about 15-20 min.
My current schedule is:
Tuesday- am session only
Weds-pm session only but I teach in the am a bit
Thurs-am session only
Friday all day
Total I get paid for-24 hours-75% time. Call is 1:4. I am on a hospital committee that meets twice per year, and have med staff meetings 4x per year in the evening, as well as OB meetings once per month but that comes out of my clinic time so isn't really extra hours.
Final advice-school hours are tough to stick to-I would leave at least an hour 'buffer'-like, my sessions supposedly end at 12:30 but I am rarely totally done before 1:30. Pickup at school is at 3 and we are 10 min away, I schedule my last pt for 2 or 2;15.....I personally think it is better to work the am session only and do more days then try to fit in a few pts after lunch and get out in time to meet the bus, just my .02....(or .05!!)