There was a time when doctors looked forward to retiring after a successful career, looking to vacation, play golf and spend more time with their families. But these days, it seems more physicians are halting retirement plans.
A new study from CompHealth examined late-career physicians’ sentiments toward retirement and revealed that many aren’t looking to hang up their scrubs and stethoscopes anytime soon.
According to the study, social interaction topped the list of greatest retirement concerns, while 91% of doctors still feel they can provide a useful service to patients. It’s no wonder that many physicians are holding off on retiring for as long as they can.
Larry Good, MD, FACG, a 69-year-old gastroenterologist at Larry I Good MD PC, Lynbrook, New York, has been in practice 38 years in a wide range of settings, including academic, director of a clinical department, lecturer, researcher and presenter at national and international medical meetings.
“I have not thought about retirement. I am involved in many projects, including a pharmaceutical development project. I deeply believe that I provide a very valuable service to my patients and profession,” he says. “Being active allows me to be more effective clinically in areas of research and pharmaceutical consulting.”
In the study, 51% of respondents said that still working occasionally or part-time is part of their ideal retirement plans.
Murray Grossan, MD, part of a five person ENT specialty group at Cedars Sinai Center in Los Angeles, California, says there is evidence that being creative slows aging, so despite being 95 years old, he still works four half-days a week.
“I’ve certainly thought about retiring, but when you consider what gives you energy, it turns out to be doing medicine and solving medical problems,” he says.
He compares the field of medicine to the music industry, where many musicians continue to tour well into their post-retirement-age years.