There are too many simpler and easier ways to make money and most doctors come from families of independent means to begin with.
LOL not the doctors I had known or the one doctor I used to date and most of them have debts in the many many hundreds of thousands at the end of their training.
Off to google,,,,,,,,,,,INDEPENDENT MEANS INDEED!!!!!!!!
The Hidden Costs of Medical Student Debt
Doctor and Patient |
By PAULINE W. CHEN, M.D.| July 28, 2011, 12:01 am 105 Comments
iHe was a senior surgeon many of us in training wanted to emulate — smart, busy and beloved by patients and staff. But we loved him most because he could have been any one of us. He had slogged through the same training program some 15 years earlier, and he had survived.
I caught up with him one afternoon during my internship, hoping to glean some wisdom, but all he could talk about was how he was going to be seeing patients less and focusing on his dream of improving hospital quality and efficiency. “Don’t get me wrong,” he said. “I love caring for patients.” But the stress of keeping a practice afloat was wearing him down.
“Plus the monkey is finally off my back now,” he said with an enormous grin. “I paid off my last student loan.”
My heart dropped. That the specter of student loan payments would loom over my life for at least another decade and a half was utterly disheartening.
But absolutely true. It wasn’t until my early 40s that I paid off my last loan.
For almost three generations, debt has been a nearly inescapable part of becoming a doctor. Over 80 percent of each medical student class will graduate in debt; and while that percentage has remained unchanged for 25 years, the increase in the total amount owed has leapfrogged over all other economic reality checks, like inflation and the consumer price index. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, which has been trying to address the problem for nearly a decade, young doctors who graduated from medical school last year had an average debt of $158,000, or $2.3 billion for the group as a whole. Almost a third of students owed more than $200,000, a number that will only increase with the addition of interest over payback periods of 25 to 30 years.
The skyrocketing costs are primarily due to the expansion and increasing complexity of universities and academic medical centers, and to the trend among university administrators to use tuition to support institutional projects that may be only indirectly linked to medical student education.
But while upgraded clinical facilities and spectacular research programs are obvious reasons, another key factor has gone largely unnoticed. It is our society’s assumption that individual indebtedness is required to obtain big-ticket items, whether they are cars, houses or higher education.
“It’s become normal now to take out loans to get anything of value,” said Dr. S. Ryan Greysen, an assistant professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and lead author of a fascinating study published this month on the historical and social factors that have contributed to rising medical student indebtedness. “Getting a medical education has become similar to getting a mortgage on your house.”
The acceptance of student indebtedness as the “norm” of medical school has provided a kind of carte blanche for robust tuition increases. Median yearly tuition at public medical schools is $29,000, and at private institutions it is $47,000 — increases from two decades earlier of over 312 percent and 165 percent, respectively. While some may counter that future doctors can well afford such increases and loans, the rising debt load has had and will have repercussions on patients, particularly those in greatest need.