17 Medical Salaries, Adjusted for ‘Quality-of-Living’

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According to labor statistics, some nurses can make north of $100,000 a year. Meanwhile, according to the documentary “The Vanishing Oath,” a full-time physician in the U.S. can take home as little as $28/hr before taxes.

These are two extremes, but it brings up an interesting topic I’ve been thinking about for a while now: How much does the pay you get out of a medical job actually give you?

We often hear of 60, 70, even 80-hour work-weeks debasing the currency of some medical salaries, while overall satisfaction for other healthcare jobs is among the highest in any industry…So what does it all work out to when it comes to the quality-of-life your job lets you have?

To find out, I did some basic math with the most recent available salary, hourly pay, average weekly hours worked, and overtime data, as well as average time needed to complete training, job satisfaction, and other elements from a variety of sources.

The results were surprising, on several levels: Continue reading “17 Medical Salaries, Adjusted for ‘Quality-of-Living’”

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Medical Technology that Used to be Science-Fiction

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A few weeks before Star Trek: Into Darkness hit theatres, we looked at “23rd Century health technologies that already exist.”

At the time, it was amazing to see how many futuristic devices we see in the movies (and not just that saga, but in the Marvel universe, Star Wars, and others) that are quickly becoming reality.

For medical professionals and aspiring super-heroes, here’s a look at some more medical sci-fi that’s here today

3D printing of prosthetics and bone/joint replacements (The Fifth Element)

Ever see that beautifully-crafted sci-fi action movie in which Bruce Willis has to find-and-assemble people/stuff from different planets to save the Earth?

…Let’s try this again: Ever see that pre-Resident-Evil movie where Milla Jovovich jumps off a futuristic 900-floor building wearing nothing but a bandage designed by Jean-Paul Gaultier? (OK, awesome.)

Before that scene in The Fifth Element, said actress’ character is “resurrected” from a tiny bit of ancient DNA that gets re-built in seconds in a robotic chamber that can build anything, including people. Sound far-fetched?

Not only can 3D printing technology already create objects that stand-in for missing body parts (like prosthetics) but it can even “print” objects that could be used inside humans, such as replacement bones, joints, and other pieces of us, and perhaps soon, even living replacements using human stem cells as the “ink.” Continue reading “Medical Technology that Used to be Science-Fiction”

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How to Ride the ‘Quality-of-Life’ Care Wave

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Roughly 75 percent of America’s annual $2.6 trillion-dollar health care budget is spent on chronic illness care.

In the interest of being proactive about stemming the tide of chronic illness, we’ve measured what sociologist Morris David Morris called The Physical Quality of Life Index, which looks at basic literacy, infant mortality, and life expectancy.

It wasn’t until 2006, though, that researchers started looking at a more refined measuring stick  for quality-of-life, or QOL (not-to-be-confused with standard-of-living) to try and better predict and prevent chronic illness.

That’s when the Happy Planet Index (HPI) – an index of human well-being and environmental impact – was introduced by the London, UK-based New Economics Foundation.

Like other modern QOL references, the index challenges well-established indices of countries’ development, such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the Human Development Index (HDI).

Instead, more progressive models like the Happy Planet Index might be just as concerned with literally how “happy” a patient is, or how well they fit in with their peers…how well they’re able to keep up with their children, or innovate at work. Continue reading “How to Ride the ‘Quality-of-Life’ Care Wave”

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5 Pieces of Health Research You Can Thank the Olympics For

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From physiologists simulating new methods of different mountaintop breathing conditions for training skiers to sport psychologists helping prime the brains of elite athletes to be more like those of figure skaters to win, the Olympic Games are often prime-time for health science researchers to generate funding for studies that would otherwise be difficult to fund.

While there are thousands of scientists and medical professionals around the world working on Olympic-related research because in-anticipation of Sochi 2014, we found five studies from current and past Olympic Games that have forever changed health research: Continue reading “5 Pieces of Health Research You Can Thank the Olympics For”

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How to Resign from Your Hospital Job (and Keep Your Medical Career)

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In the medical field, job change is a regular path to promotion (or at least getting out of an unsatisfactory situation).

Before you waltz out the door, though, it’s essential to have a positive exit strategy. Your last impression in your current job can impact your career prospects for years to come. Continue reading “How to Resign from Your Hospital Job (and Keep Your Medical Career)”

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9 People Who Have Turned Medical Imaging Into Art

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About 5 years ago, I looked at the rainbow strands of light below and wondered if I was seeing some sort of digital art.

What I was actually seeing was a map of someone’s brain, made with a Siemens Magnetom Allegra 3-Tesla scanner at Massachusetts General Hospital.

By imaging the mobility of water molecules, the brilliant strands here showed nerve pathways – essentially a wiring diagram of a thought…maybe even a feeling. Continue reading “9 People Who Have Turned Medical Imaging Into Art”

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