A Bias of Specialty Choice – Why did you become a Family Physician in Austria?


Conference Paper


Proceedings of the 14\textsuperscript{th} Regional Conference of Family Doctors (WONCA Europe) in Istanbul. (2008)




<p>Aims: At some point in her career a physician makes a specialty choice hoping that eventually practicing her chosen medical specialty (CMS) will result in her optimal job satisfaction. On the other hand anecdotal evidence suggests that the medical job selection process in Austria is at best arbitrary and therefore many physicians do not attain their CMS. The aims of this study were to assess the extent to which physicians fail to attain their CMS and how that affects actual job satisfaction. Methods: All board-certified physicians practicing in Vienna were polled with a 12-item questionnaire sent out in two mailings. Their actual job satisfaction was correlated to their expected job satisfaction had they attained their CMS. Results: Of the 8,127 physicians included in the study 2,736 (34%) completed the questionnaire. 50.3% of all physicians and 65.1% of family physicians (FPs) did not attain their CMS. There was a significant difference in RJS between specialists who reached their CMS (RJS=0.95) and those who didn't (RJS=0.62) (Chi-square p&lt;0.000). No significant difference in RJS could be found between FPs who originally aspired to become specialists (RJS=0.89) and specialists who originally wanted to become FPs (RJS=0.81). Conclusion: There is a high percentage of FPs in Austria who had originally aspired to becoming specialized in a different discipline. Nevertheless they obtained a high level of job satisfaction in Family Medicine. The contrary can be observed in specialists who do not fare well when not having attained their CMS.</p>