Dr. Mom: Is Work Life Balance In Medicine Possible?

By editor
May 10, 2017

Happy Mother’s Day to all our providers, nurses, friends, and colleagues who do the tough work of balancing motherhood and all its demands with a career in healthcare.

Are you ready for a few completely insane statistics?

According to recent data, more than 80% of the people who work in healthcare are female. That’s almost eleven million women. Of those, fewer than 9% - yep, NINE - are satisfied with their work-life balance.

And if you’re a woman in healthcare who falls into that 91% of unsatisfied people, you’re probably saying, “this is not news to me; this is my real life.”

What’s more, it’s pretty obvious that while work-life balance is absolutely an issue that affects women dramatically (hi, Mom!), it’s also an issue that everyone in the field - men, women, parents, childless people alike - should care about.

Some voices in the conversation have said that work-life balance is impossible - that if you want to commit to a career in medicine, you have to give something up. This whole idea of balance is an illusion, they say, fostered by corporations and unrealistic idealists who have no idea what the real demands of the field are like.

And they’re not entirely wrong; many of us have endured years of severe burnout and know exactly how demanding a career this is.

That’s a major reason we’ve made the choices we have as a healthcare company. We think that physicians, nurses, and healthcare providers who have balanced, full lives are able to take care of themselves and their patients better. We believe that promoting a culture that values work-life balance will result in better work and better lives.

And you know what? It turns out that we’re not an evil corporation or a bunch of dreamers; we’re a collective of doctors who really enjoy helping patients AND seeing our families (in fact, you can see a lot of us talk on camera about our experiences here!).

The data supports us, too: a recent third-party study of SWC physicians and providers showed over 90% job satisfaction. Why? We’ll let our doctors tell you themselves.

“I’m a mom with three small kids and needed a job that offered flexibility.”

“I had a surgical background, and wanted to have work/life balance.”

So to all the doctors - and most especially, the mothers - out there who are working on too much caffeine and too little sleep, it can get better. We agree with you: the system isn’t working very well right now. But we’re working to change that, and we hope you’ll work with us.

Happy Mother’s Day, everybody, from all of us at Skilled Wound Care to all of you.

 

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