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How many hours do you spend per week on full-time/part-time work?

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  • How many hours do you spend per week on full-time/part-time work?

    With the author of today's blog post, and several commenters also mentioning full- or part-time work, with some alluding to the topic of burnout -OR- just a desire to cut back clinical hours from full time to part time in order to have time enough to pursue other interests (e.g., blogging, travel, volunteer work/medical missions, etc.), it made me wonder about the time we spend doing work and how we define full- or part-time clinical jobs.  Obviously, some people who have their own private practices will get to define it however they want.  Many of us are employed physicians. Also, it's July, and some residents/fellows are starting their final year of training, and the end of the program is more tangible; some may have either started looking for jobs or are just about to do so.

    I've worked for two academic institutions.

    One job: 1.0 FTE was defined in the contract as 50 hours per week (typically five days per week, and you are generally expected to be present at work during more typical "business" hours) including clinical work, teaching (students and residents on rotation), more formal teaching (lectures), and administrative (meetings) and research time, unless you had a "director" type of role (such as medical director, director of medical student rotations, program director, etc.), in which case it was defined as 60 hours per week. In my experience, I would find myself spending 2-3 hours almost every night at home on documentation--usually waiting for resident notes to finish so I could finish the work.  I felt the burnout; it was stressful to never feel like I have time to turn work off in my life until the weekends.  Night/weekend call coverage was above the typical 1.0 FTE of 50 or 60 hours, and it was optional (because enough people wanted to participate in call) and was paid.

    Another job: 1.0 FTE includes typical M-F "business" hours with clinic part of the day seeing outpatients, with rounds for inpatients and consults during the other part of the day.  Minimal time to get administrative/documentation work done, with minimal idle time during the day and no dedicated time for other academic activities such as research (though it is a clinical position and research isn't built in to the job description), and it seems like more nights than not (particularly if rounding on inpatients), some documentation work needs to be done at home in order for it to be completed.  Night/weekend coverage is not compensated separately, and an attending will find him/herself on call every other week, or sometimes is on call one week out of three or four.

    The biggest aspect for me in contributing to burnout is the setup of the clinical load being such that I can't ever feel rested if I know that the workload is such that I have a couple of hours of work to do after I get home. I was wondering whether this is common, to be in an employed position and not be able to finish work at work.  It seems to be one of the reasons people cite for wanting to be FI--so that they can pick and choose how much they want to work (i.e., avoid doing things they wouldn't want to do).

  • #2
    For me, the hours are highly variable, but my part time position will consist of four days at the surgery center (call that 40 hours) and a usually busy 72-hour weekend working and covering the hospital, with some home call. Doing that busy 7 day stretch once a month will qualify as a 0.6 FTE.



    • #3
      THis is a great thread idea. Looking forward to hearing what others have to say. I'm an employed psychiatrist at an academic institution. Our time is determined by number of patient hours scheduled. 1.0 FTE is 28 hours of patient care each week. However, they like to book us 10% over to make up for no shows. I find this annoying but have not tried to fight it. Since residency I have always been 0.75 FTE (so I booked 23 hours of patient care each week) but since having a kid I've been 0.25 or 0.34 FTE. So I'm doing 10.5 hours each week. This doesn't include random paperwork (FMLA or disability) or patient emails/phone calls/rx refills but I can do that at home at my leisure while holding my kid so it doesn't bother me. I probably average 30 minutes of this a day. I get all my patient documentation done while they are in the room. Being efficient is super important to avoiding burnout, I think. I teach 4 lectures a year and have med students shadow sometimes. I am the stand in to cover the resident continuity clinic when the regular attending is on vacation and that's a sweet gig since you just have to sign the charts, meet n greet new patients, and provide pep talks to the residents during supervision. And all the hours I spend doing this count towards my patient care hours. I don't attend any meetings or anything-if it's really important they'll send out an email. I think if I was truly working 1.0 FTE I would have a hard time in my job so I'm thankful I don't have a need to do that.


      • #4
        Erstwhile Dance Theatre of Dayton performer cum bellhop. Carried (many) bags for a lovely and gracious 59 yo Cyd Charisse. (RIP) Hosted epic company parties after Friday night rehearsals.


        • #5
          Employed, 1.0 FTE is at least 32 hours of patient contact per week. I get Mondays off now. I average about that anyway with some call thrown in.


          • #6
            I'm about 1.5 FTE for cardiology if you look at rvu production. Basically do 7 am to 5 pm with no lunch with pretty busy call q4 nights and q4 weekend. 3-4 weeks off per year. So avg 50-80 hour work weeks.

            But I'll be going down to about 1.0 wRvu equivalent with 4 day work week and 6-8 weeks off on the next 1-2 years

            I still have complete control of schedule, number of pts and time off.. but trying to find balance between chasing rvu/dollars and maintaining sanity


            • #7
              Full time derm is 4 days a week .

              Except Kaiser, who thinks FT derm is 4.5 or 5 days a week...

              I'd say my total clinical hours + time on notes/call backs spent is 30-33 hrs a week on average (not including weekend call, maybe additional 5 hrs). Unfortunately my commute time is 9-10 hrs a week.


              • #8
                Emergency medicine here.  Scheduled on a monthly basis (as schedule can vary from one week to next).  Full time is 108 hours per month scheduled (this doesn't count time held over wrapping up or finishing charts).  Though most work 120-130 hours per week.  Usually works out to 15-17 days/month.


                • #9
                  I average 27.5 hrs/wk.  I wonder how low I can go and still maintain staff!


                  • #10
                    FT anesthesia - 40 hrs/week spread over 4 days, paid extra if I stay past the end of my "scheduled" hours. I negotiated a call free position but am paid extra (hourly) for the minimal amount of call I do take. This position is obviously a massive paycut compared to anesthesiologists who take a lot of call but it works well for our family and we don't need the extra money since my husband is a cardiologist. His FT position is 32 clinical hours per week over 4 days with some call (slightly less than once per week).


                    • #11
                      I am semi-retired now.  I quit OB at 56.  I now work 3 days per week doing just GYN.  Essentially no call, weekends, or holidays.  I actually cannot work more than 20 hours per week per my part time malpractice coverage.


                      • #12
                        I am in academics and have a significant administrative role

                        I see patients 2 full days which works out to about 18 hours per week, plus a couple more hours of follow up/forms/etc

                        Total is 55-60 hours with some (writing and editing papers) done at home on weekends

                        I do have great administrative support so am trying to offload things like routine follow up calls


                        • #13
                          It would be great if people would include specialty as well so its easier to compare.


                          Just finished fellowship, and I'll be starting a M-F 8:30am-5pm position (1.0 FTE) in an ortho group without any call responsibilities.  Purely clinical, no research or admin duties.


                          I have no idea how much time I'll be spending after clinic to finish notes but I'm hopeful it wont be more than 30 minutes with on the fly dictation.


                          • #14
                            Ophthalmology. Employed by medium sized healthcare organization. FTE 32 hours per week. Tuesday through Friday. Mondays off.

                            I guess I can't complain about my hours.


                            • #15
                              WCICON24 EarlyBird
                              Just curious. How is this ortho position without call? Who takes care of your post ops on Sundays, etc?