What Doctors Can Do if They're Sick of Working in a Hospital

Sure, in most cases it takes longer than a decade to finally become a doctor, but that doesn't mean you have to keep working in a hospital if you're ready for something new. Walking away from a six-digit income could also stop you from exploring other options, but sometimes it's best to turn your back on money so you can gain a sense of happiness. With that said, here are nine things you can do if you're sick of working in a hospital setting. 

doctor in scrubs with backpack slung over his shoulder

Image via flickr by edenpictures

Become a Medical Writer and Editor

Not only do doctors have a lot of knowledge and experience, but they have credibility in the field. Since medical writing involves scientific documents ranging from educational literature to publication articles, doctors are the perfect candidates for this position. The demand for medical writing and editing is especially growing in the pharmaceutical and healthcare communication markets. If you're interested in becoming a medical writer and editor, check out the full abstract outlining what you can expect from the position and more. 

Become a Teacher 

Another career option for people who completed medical school and have worked as doctors is to put down the stethoscope at the hospital and pick up some chalk in the classroom. Although the employment of high school teachers is expected to grow by six percent from 2012 to 2022, which is slower than the average of all occupations, the demand for math and science teachers is at an all-time high. With a background in the sciences, doctors who are sick of working in the hospital can go from helping patients heal to helping students learn. 

Become an International Volunteer 

Perhaps you're tired of looking at the same white walls day-in and day-out in a hospital, hoping to find a new adventure in your life to reinvigorate you. Packing your bags and volunteering in another part of the world where you're desperately needed is a rewarding experience. Doctors Without Borders is one such organization that "delivers independent emergency medical care to victims of armed conflict, brings relief in the aftermath of natural or man-made disasters, and fights deadly epidemics in more than 70 countries around the world."  

Become a Consultant

Most doctors have been approached by a PR company at least once during their career, asking them for their opinions when creating new pharmaceutical products. Drug companies aren't the only ones dishing out money for doctors' opinions, though, as many other companies look to them for consultation. For example, biotech companies search for doctors to assist them with improving their methods and help them with research and development. Considering you could earn upwards of $200,000 per year, you won't miss a step financially by making this move. 

Become an Expert Witness

Becoming a medical expert witness is another lucrative path that some doctors choose to take. In this field, doctors carefully screen lawsuits and serve as expert witnesses in medical malpractice cases. Although there have been doctors with questionable ethical standards who have become infamous for saying what a lawyer wants them to say -- hired guns -- it's possible to select the lawsuits you wish to either defend or prosecute according to your ethical code. Not only are you financially rewarded, but you feel like you make a difference in people's lives, too.  

Become a Public Speaker or a Personality 

Another way to make a difference in people's lives is to directly interact with and engage them. OK, so most doctors don't have the personality for it, but if you think you can captivate an audience then why not try your hand at public speaking or become a TV/radio personality. Some doctors run entire businesses just by getting paid to speak publicly. Others use television or radio as a way to showcase their knowledge and personality, while attracting clientele for coaching practices or cash-based medical practices. If you have the personality, the sky is the limit.  

Become an Online Entrepreneur 

Speaking of running an entire business, the Internet is the perfect place for doctors to start fresh outside the hospital walls. With their knowledge and experience, doctors can build online communities through writing books, blogging, or social media and use them to sell their products or services (eBooks, webinars, teleclasses, etc.). If you're looking for a bit of inspiration to help you get started in your online journey, check out Oprah's list of the best doctor blogs. If you're half the doctor you say you are, you'll have your own successful one in no time. 

Become a Private Physician

OK, so maybe you're sick of working in a hospital, but that doesn't necessarily mean you're sick of being a doctor. Simply put, you just want to be your own while taking on more responsibility. If this sounds like you, then perhaps it's time to make a major career move and start your own private practice. When opening a private medical practice, it's critical that you don't make these five mistakes. If you've weighed the pros and cons of starting your own practice and still want to do it, take some pointers from this physician's story to help along the way.  

Become a Doctor for Telemedicine/Cybermedicine 

As mentioned, the Internet is another world that's open to doctors who want to step outside their traditional roles in a hospital setting. Today, there's an increasing demand for doctors who can offer advice and guidance over the phone and on the Internet. If you have the knowledge to work from home and provide patients with the information they need to receive a quick diagnosis or professional opinion, then this job could be the perfect alternative for you. With more than 100,000 websites that have medical content, you'll find a spot online easily. 

If you've read through this list and you're interested hasn't been piqued, maybe it's a sign that you should enroll back in school and pursue a new degree. Otherwise, take a leap of faith and follow your heart. Life is too short.

Are you a doctor that eventually chose a new path to follow? Leave a comment and share your story. 

Contributed to jobs.net by Kim Evans

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