Being a pediatrician, you get to interact with different kinds of patients. This makes your job more exciting as you acquire new experiences every day. You also get to treat various diseases, which makes the job challenging and allows for mental stimulation.
The most logical reason people get into pediatrics is the desire to help children. It’s hard to think of an occupation that’s more rewarding than one that makes kids feel better. There’s a great sense of satisfaction that comes with treating a sick child, possibly saving their life, and seeing improvement in their health. The public health aspect of pediatrics, as discussed earlier, also gives a huge amount of personal satisfaction.
So long as the world’s population continues to grow, which it is, pediatricians will always be in demand. The immune systems for infants, children, and adolescents aren’t fully functional, meaning they need special healthcare until they become adults. There’s also the rapid rise of pediatric neurological disorders such as autism, not to mention, increases in childhood obesity. These facts drive the demand for pediatricians because they are the ones who possess the knowledge to provide children with medical care and treatment. Demand is even higher in rural or low-income areas.
While all clinical careers tend to have long working hours, pediatricians often have the benefit of more flexible scheduling. Typically, they work fewer hours than other specialists. For example, while you may work a 9-to-5 schedule, you often don’t have to work at night. As a pediatrician, you can also work part time. Working this type of schedule can help you ease into retirement, while still giving you the opportunity to see your patients.
Pediatricians earn a national average salary of $65,606 per year. Your salary as a pediatrician may vary based on your employer, your geographic location and your level of expertise. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, outpatient care centers offer a higher mean annual wage compared to other locations like hospitals, colleges or physicians’ offices. Along with a sizable salary, you may also receive employee benefits like health insurance, paid time off and relocation assistance, all depending on your employer.
When you pursue a career in pediatrics, you can become a general pediatrician or choose a specific sub-specialty. Podiatrists have much more flexibility in choosing a sub-specialty compared to other medical careers. A wide variety of sub-specialties can mean greater employment opportunities, a wider selection of working environments and, in some cases, a higher salary. Here are some of the sub-specialties you can pursue:
- Critical care
- Adolescent medicine
As a pediatrician, it’s your job to help ill or injured children improve their health and live fuller lives. No matter the diagnosis or treatment, knowing you made a positive contribution to a child’s life can give you greater job satisfaction. This can also help you feel more fulfilled and happy overall.