Financial Management as a New Doctor: Where to Start

Congratulations to all the new doctors! You are all going to save a lot of … Read more

5 Rules for Protecting Your Family’s Financial Future, Part I

Medical Spouse

Medical training is a significant investment for both you and your spouse. It’s an investment … Read more

Personal Finance Tips for Healthcare Professionals

personal finance

Medical school, graduate school, dental school, any graduate or professional school: they are all expensive! … Read more

Financial Literacy for the Newly Minted Physician Part II: Introduction to Do-It-Yourself Investing

In our last installment, we recognized the value of money as a means of allotting your time in accordance with your values; identified financial independence for physicians as a goal worth pursuing from the earliest stages of your medical training; and discussed poor decisions that physicians commonly make, with the hope that we might tame the impulse to buy a new car or an irrationally expensive home fresh out of med school or residency.

Read more

Financial Literacy for the Newly Minted Physician: Part One

“Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it…he who doesn’t, pays it.
-Albert Einstein
Your Life Of Abundance
The first thing to note about your life the day after you finish residency is that, despite the fashionable whining of your peers, yours has been an existence of relative abundance: You have likely never driven a nicer car, earned a higher salary, or had greater autonomy.
In 2014, the average resident salary one year out of medical school was $51,000 (Medscape). For perspective, in 2014 the median U.S. household income was $53,657 (U.S. Census Bureau). Given that the median household size was 2.54, a new, single intern fared better than most families that year (Statista).

Read more

The Key for Student Doctors to be Debt Free

paying off student debt

With loan debt for students in graduate health professions rising exponentially, the conversation around choosing the right  student loan repayment option  and/or opting for the  public service loan forgiveness (PSLF)  program is becoming much more popular. Instead of focusing on what repayment plan gives a graduate the lowest monthly payment or whether or not he/she should pursue loan forgiveness, why not focus on  minimizing expenses  and working hard to pay off the debt as fast as soon as possible? This will allow for moving on to other financial goals with more intensity and focus such as buying a home, saving for retirement, and giving to name a few…all without any student loan debt getting in the way. 

Read more

Chronicles of a Med Student: All Aboard the Financial Struggle Bus

Chronicles of a Med Student

I remember the sheer joy of ripping open the letter that granted me a medical school spot. Everything was roses and rainbows, and I was thrilled that my dreams were coming true. This cute little fantasy carried on until I received the tuition numbers a few weeks later . . . wow. I had no money, and I was being expected to pay how much? Regardless of what you hear from other people about how doctors make enough money to quickly pay back their debt, those five digits after the dollar sign per year are still scary.

Read more

Book Review–Doctored: The Disillusionment of an American Physician, by Dr. Sandeep Jauhar

book review doctored

“It is our obligation to remove the biases that stand in the way of good medicine. We need to assure no consideration of economic self-interest will prevent us from giving our patients the safest, most effective, and most economically responsible health care possible.” So spoke the president of the American College of Cardiology to a group of inductees in 2005. In the audience sat many young doctors, including Dr. Sandeep Jauhar, a New York cardiologist struggling with many aspects of the American healthcare system. The convocation speech is filled with platitudes such as this one, and virtually no doctor, especially at the outset of his/her training, would disagree with these sentiments. The struggle, writes Jauhar, is to actually make convocation speeches come to life. How do we keep these sentiments from just being banal and clichéd statements and instead enact them, creating a real impact in the way we practice medicine? This question and the effects of our failure to answer form a central theme in Jauhar’s memoir Doctored.

Read more

Budgeting in Medical School: Does It Really Matter?

budgeting in medical school

By Brent Schnipke, MD Medical students deal with a lot of scary things: frequent do-or-die … Read more

If I Had a Million Dollars (But I Don’t)

Someday, after years of school (then more school) and residency training, we will start earning doctors’ salaries. In the meantime, finances can be tight, but there are ways to cut costs, optimize the money you do have, and maybe even bring in a little extra on the side.
There’s an old moniker you can’t change what you don’t acknowledge. It’s hard to make a budget if you don’t know what you’re spending currently. Take a few weeks and keep track, ideally a full month. Write down everything, regardless of how you pay for it – cash, check, credit card, bitcoin. . . Even if you have a 0% interest credit card and won’t be paying it off for a while, write it down. Then, consider your monthly income. If you’re ending the month in the black – congratulations! You’re on the right track. You may still want to decrease your expenses to reduce your overall loan burden. If you find your monthly cost of living exceeding your income, it is definitely worth your while to take a hard look at what you’re spending and how to cut back.

Read more

Financial Considerations for the Student Doctor

I first started reading SDN as a medical student, more than a decade ago. In medical education, some of the best advice seems to come from those who are one year ahead of you in the medical education pipeline. SDN allowed me access to more people ahead of me in their training (and the very useful information they would provide) than I could find playing foosball in the lounge at school. As I progressed through the pipeline, I found myself receiving less and less information and dispensing more and more. As residency becomes a more distant memory each year, I can assure you there is light at the end of the tunnel. Residency is survivable. You will eventually feel competent in your specialty. You will make great friends and actually save some lives. Those five-figure paychecks will eventually start rolling in, and if you manage them well, will provide you a comfortable life and retirement.

Read more