Why Doctors Leave Medicine

Dr. Tiran Gopal, Senior Physician at Sutter Health in Allentown, Pennsylvania, joined us. beckers Through more than 40 years of experience, we discuss issues such as physician burnout and combating misinformation.

Q: In a recent survey, only 57.5% of doctors would choose to become a doctor again. What reforms would you make to change their minds?

Dr. Tirun Gopal: It’s easy to complain about your career. After all, is there a career or profession without challenges? Besides, the grass over the fence is always green.

Physician burnout, fatigue, and low morale and empathy are of great concern. Factors contributing to these are:

1. A significant portion of the path to becoming a doctor is spent in medical school and training.

2. At the end of this journey, the student appears as a doctor with a huge debt equivalent to a mortgage. Therefore, it is necessary to choose a profitable specialty. This has a negative impact on health care in general, as it reduces the number of primary care physicians, especially in remote areas.

3. Medicine is becoming more complex, with more specialties and subspecialties. Therefore, doctors are becoming more and more experts in some part of the patient’s anatomy. Therefore, modern doctors are more likely to treat symptoms rather than patients.

4. Websites are flooded with information and disinformation, so patients tend to come to the clinic with a half-knowledge of their condition, creating tensions and barriers in relationships. This negatively affects both doctors and patients.

5. As artificial intelligence becomes more pervasive and makes its way into the medical field, many doctors will soon be replaced by more empathetic, indomitable AI that is predicted to soon become sentient. I am afraid that

6. Having worked as a clinician myself for the past 45 years, I must confess that I miss the trust I once had from my patients. While I admit to being resentful of patients who challenge me with information gleaned overnight from Dr. Google, I do mind the fact that I always know more medicine than they do. Don’t bother to confront me. If there was one thing that got me off drugs at 74, it would be this.

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