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Old 04-30-2021, 04:22 PM   #21
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I started looking for young professionals years ago that I could stay with a while - not just docs, but CPA, insurance, and attorney too. I hope I’m still around when they retire, but I probably won’t care by then.
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Old 04-30-2021, 04:36 PM   #22
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A 69 year old Surgeon? And considering retirement now? Yes, good surgeons are hard to find, and are of great value to society, but "come on, man". Time to give it up.
Michael DeBakey was still doing heart surgery until his death at 99.
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Old 04-30-2021, 04:54 PM   #23
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A 69 year old Surgeon? And considering retirement now? Yes, good surgeons are hard to find, and are of great value to society, but "come on, man". Time to give it up.

Why is it time to give it up..? Give me a good reason. A 71 heart surgeon saved my DH's life in the OR. More then one professional at the hospital told me, good thing Dr T was here taking care of business. Dr T is now closer to 75 and still operates 4 days a week...he's the most humble man you could ever imagine...He was born to be a great surgeon and still loves it.
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Old 04-30-2021, 05:20 PM   #24
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A 69 year old Surgeon? And considering retirement now? Yes, good surgeons are hard to find, and are of great value to society, but "come on, man". Time to give it up.
As long as he is still of sound mind and body and steady hand, why stop doing what you love? I'm sure hundreds of patients are grateful that he didn't retire years ago.


Our old family doctor who was also a close family friend, remained in practice until he died at 94. He loved life and saw no reason to stop. He didn't work full time or deal with any of the nonsense that he didn't want to deal with. He worked on his terms his whole life, and he was quite wealthy. My father was his accountant so knew his finances intimately well.
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Old 04-30-2021, 05:20 PM   #25
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Why is it time to give it up..? Give me a good reason. A 71 heart surgeon saved my DH's life in the OR. More then one professional at the hospital told me, good thing Dr T was here taking care of business. Dr T is now closer to 75 and still operates 4 days a week...he's the most humble man you could ever imagine...He was born to be a great surgeon and still loves it.
I bet he can operate circles around his younger colleagues. There's no substitute for experience.
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Old 04-30-2021, 05:44 PM   #26
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A 69 year old Surgeon? And considering retirement now? Yes, good surgeons are hard to find, and are of great value to society, but "come on, man". Time to give it up.
Some doctors don't even buy their first home until they are in the mid 40s. Our family doctor years ago is still practicing at age 83. Other specialists I know are still working in theIr late 60s.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:01 PM   #27
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Some doctors don't even buy their first home until they are in the mid 40s. Our family doctor hears ago is still practicing at age 83. Other specialists I know are still working in theIr late 60s.
When I started med school, the average age in my first year class was 27 and the oldest member of the class was 44. I was the relative baby of the class at 21. Many people go to med school as a 2nd career. If you don't start school until you're 30, then have 4 years of med school and at least 3 years of residency, you're at least 37 when you get into practice so retiring at 55 or 60 probably isn't on your agenda.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:03 PM   #28
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So I wonder what happens when all these "newly affluent" retirees start to sell off investments to fund their early retirements?
As an early retiree after almost 5 years, I have yet to sell off anything significant to fund my retirement.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:17 PM   #29
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Hehe, yeah. I'm a boomer 7 year retired and I have more in equities than I started with. Even though I sell lots of them they just keep replenishing

Kinda like a dogpatch ham.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:41 PM   #30
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About 8 years ago my doctors began retiring. Since then I have made a point of only selecting doctors in their late 30's - early 40's when I need a new doctor. And I tell all of them they are forbidden from retiring until I kick the bucket decades from now!
My primary physician has an internal medicine practice he shares with 3 other doctors. He is 69 years old, and talks about retirement.

But he has a big house and he drives a Cadillac Escalade. He had 2.3 children that went to private schools. He sent one daughter thru medical school, and she's just out of residency at Cleveland Clinic. Her husband is a neurosurgeon, so they have a good future.

But primary care physicians often have a 50% Expense Ratio in his office. And most really have middle class incomes while living the high life. Doctors are famous for getting into bad investments, and many don't even get their own student loans paid until their 50's. Very few doctors get out of medical school without student loans.

My doctor would like to retire, but I assume he will have to work into his 70's like his partners. We forget that most physicians are independent businessmen, and they have to fund their pensions 100%. And with the student loans, cost of doing business and family obligations, they just don't have enough retirement savings to maintain their current lifestyles.

No wonder so many are selling out their practices to the big chain hospitals--for cash. Then they continue to work as independent contractors.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:47 PM   #31
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There's definitely a trade off. Studies have shown that younger providers tend to be more familiar with the latest treatment guidelines, so you gain that up to date knowledge base. On the flip side, as the article touches on, the "soft" skills aren't taught in school; they develop over years of practice experience.


I'm reminded of the movie Doc Hollywood where Michael J. Fox thought he was a hot shot young doctor know it all and the old time rural doc (Barnard Hughes) was past his prime and needed to pack it in. Of course, over time the young guy learned the value of a lifetime of experience over book knowledge.


I work with many excellent young providers, 25 years my junior. They know their stuff, but I definitely see how our approaches differ and they see it too. They have often commented about how much they appreciate my input because I've got nearly 3 decades of experience that has taught me stuff you just can't learn in school.
I agree absolutely! And I remember that movie well.

There is no substitute for experience, and that is true across all fields, not just medicine.

I might be an unusual patient, I don't know. I want technical skill first in my doctors, and if they also have warmth and listening skills I consider those bonuses.

Back in 2005 I had a cancer surgeon with ZERO soft skills - but she was a wizard with a scalpel. If I wanted "soft and fuzzy" I got it from her fellows. I still remember her fellow named Cynthia - a wonderful person with both skill and the "human touch!"

In 2018 when I had cancer surgery my surgeon was older, with lots of experience, but he was quite a cold fish, with very few soft skills. I wanted the best skilled surgeon I could find, and he was it. Given that he had my life in his hands, I didn't really care if he was "warm and fuzzy" - his nurse practitioners provided (and still provide) everything I needed in terms of listening skills, good communication, etc.

After the 2018 operation I never had one minute of pain - not one. Apparently this is unusual with that operation. They sent me home with bottles of pain pills and I only ever took Tylenol. And I am a wimp when it comes to pain, believe me! That man had golden hands!

At a checkup a year after the surgery I told his long-time nurse practitioner that I was delighted to do my follow-ups with her, rather than with him. Without missing a beat, she said "he's a lot better with people who are unconscious!"

We all have our strengths, and I will take skill over personality any day of the week with my doctors (assuming I can only have one of those). Age is a secondary consideration.

Note: if I were looking for a GP, soft skills might be a lot more important to me.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:57 PM   #32
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But primary care physicians often have a 50% Expense Ratio in his office. And most really have middle class incomes while living the high life. Doctors are famous for getting into bad investments, and many don't even get their own student loans paid until their 50's. Very few doctors get out of medical school without student loans.

No wonder so many are selling out their practices to the big chain hospitals--for cash. Then they continue to work as independent contractors.
So very true.


Many years ago, I and my family were featured in an article in a national physician's financial publication for not falling into that trap. We believed in LBYM. We shopped at thrift shops, clipped coupons, cooked most meals at home, bought used non-luxury cars and a modest house, sent our kid to public school, etc. It was sufficiently atypical to warrant a multi-page feature article highlighting our approach and how it was allowing us to pay down my debt and invest for our future.


I was a PCP for 24 years and as you described had a low income and high expenses. I finally left that world and moved to urgent care for a large hospital system. My income doubled, even more so when you look at total comp. I got a 401k with a match. My health insurance costs plummeted (with far better coverage). The past 4 years since making that switch we've been able to supercharge our savings rate and we're on track for me to retire by 60 if not a bit before. That never would have happened had I remained in private family practice.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:59 PM   #33
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So why do we have comments about time> money? I'm not knocking anyone who wants to contribute to the greater cause of humanity. But on this forum we chastise anyone who has truly "made it", and stays OMY or more? What gives? We have 75+ yo politicians that refuses to retire because they thrive on the power that they have been given by the people that elected them.

I believe in one finding their own true happiness, through the freedom that one possesses through the talents that God has given each of us. So let them do what makes them happy, but don't give me this crap about affluent Americans rushing to retire at 69.
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Old 04-30-2021, 06:59 PM   #34
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I want technical skill first in my doctors, and if they also have warmth and listening skills I consider those bonuses.

Note: if I were looking for a GP, soft skills might be a lot more important to me.
I agree 100%. When I'm looking for a surgeon, I don't care about personality - I care about skill.


For a family doc, however, I want someone who I can develop a good rapport with.


Personally, I was a family doc for 24 years and for the past 4 have been doing urgent care (which is basically family medicine for acute needs) so the soft skills have always been important for me, along with the knowledge and technical skills of course.
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Old 04-30-2021, 07:01 PM   #35
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I believe in one finding their own true happiness, through the freedom that one possesses through the talents that God has given each of us. So let them do what makes them happy, but don't give me this crap about affluent Americans rushing to retire at 69.
Certainly that guy retiring at 69 isn't shocking. It's not like he's hanging it up early. Maybe earlier than he had planned to, but not early in ER terms.


I think the main point of the article is that recent events have pushed people to retire who weren't necessarily planning to.
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Old 04-30-2021, 07:04 PM   #36
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So why do we have comments about time> money? I'm not knocking anyone who wants to contribute to the greater cause of humanity. But on this forum we chastise anyone who has truly "made it", and stays OMY or more? What gives? We have 75+ yo politicians that refuses to retire because they thrive on the power that they have been given by the people that elected them.

I believe in one finding their own true happiness, through the freedom that one possesses through the talents that God has given each of us. So let them do what makes them happy, but don't give me this crap about affluent Americans rushing to retire at 69.



Your comment that this board chastises anyone who has made it and continues to work is pure fabrication. Those comments come when somebody is struggling internally with OMY syndrome and wants input from others who did the same.



We don't tell people to work or not work we answer questions about how much is enough money and how much is enough work.
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Old 04-30-2021, 07:14 PM   #37
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I agree 100%. When I'm looking for a surgeon, I don't care about personality - I care about skill.
Skill and judgment. Although some surgeons retain skills with age there isn't any formal assessment and the public can't tell who is declining.
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Old 04-30-2021, 08:35 PM   #38
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https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...ource=url_link


Apparently I'm trendy. This describes me perfectly. I've gone from expecting to work until 62 to thinking I might be able to cut back at 60 to now trying to nail things down and make 58 or 59 happen. I can totally relate to this article.


Me too. I did not have 6 a.m. Zoom meetings like the poor guy at 3M who is featured in the article, which seems downright abusive, but I did not thrive in Zoom Land. Last spring, after days full of those things, one after another, I decided, “Forget this noise”. I called my boss in May and said I wanted to leave, which I did July 8, which was about 6 months earlier than I planned. I just winked out of Zoom Land, like I was one less Hollywood Square.

The world survived just fine for decades with conference calls but endless Zooms are a new and particularly taxing kind of corporate Hell.
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Old 04-30-2021, 08:59 PM   #39
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… Zooms are a new and particularly taxing kind of corporate Hell.
I retired last May just as Zooms were rising in popularity. My chief didn’t believe in remote working so he scheduled daily 3-5 pm Zoom conference meeting with the Exec team to make sure we were working. I worked on the Dining Room table and and lovely wife got a kick out of hearing the same BS over and over again daily and the same voices saying “can you hear me now?”
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Old 05-01-2021, 02:07 AM   #40
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I really resonate with the article. I'm younger but I share the sentiment.

We would have hit our FI number this year anyway, but due to the run up over the last year, and a career bump about 24 months ago that put the savings into an even higher gear, we have blown through that number and then some.

I'm under contract for two more years so I'm not leaving, but the impact of being well past the number on my motivation and work psychology is very apparent. The fact that DD2 finishes high school and is off to college only compounds it. I never wanted my school aged kids to see Dad in a life of leisure. That topic is off the table now too.

Its not that I don't care -- I care a great deal actually -- but I just have ZERO tolerance for BS from the people above me or the growing HR whining prevalent in the wider organization.

I went at it hammer and tongs with my boss two days ago. I've never been shy about making my opinions known regardless of someone's position in the company, but I just really wasn't willing to put up with his moodiness running down my people and their hard work. I think he was surprised when I decided that two of us could have angry emotions and raise our voices at the same time.

I'd always thought I'd have OMY syndrome big time. Right now the portfolio could drop 25% and it wouldn't make us change a thing in our retirement plan.

I can't imagine renewing my contract.
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