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Obstet Gynecol. 2018 Oct;132 Suppl 1:1S-7S. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000002817.

Career Expectations of Obstetrics and Gynecology Residents and Future Residents.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, and Denver Health Medical Center, Denver, Colorado; the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, UCSF School of Medicine, San Francisco, California; Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois; the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Texas A&M School of Medicine, Bryan Texas; Colorado School of Public Health, University of Colorado, Aurora, and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, St. Joseph's Hospital, Denver, Colorado; and the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington.



To understand contemporary fourth-year medical student and resident career expectations in obstetrics and gynecology.


Students invited for obstetrics and gynecology residency interviews and residents (postgraduate years 1-4) at the University of Colorado, University of Washington, University of California San Francisco, Loyola University, St. Joseph's Hospital, and Texas A&M in 2016-2017 received a voluntary, electronic survey regarding career expectations. Questions were compared between students and residents using a χ test for category responses and for age a two-sample t test.


Response rates were similar between students (68% [277/409]) and residents (63% [97/153]). Residents compared with students were more frequently planning to enter private practice (43% vs 19%) and less frequently planning an academic career (19.4% vs 30.4%) or subspecialties (38% vs 51%) (P<.001). Although most respondents planned to work full-time (96% vs 94.9%), 83% (vs 94%) of residents planned to work greater than 40 hours per week (P<.001). Respondents reported greater than $150,000 in educational debt (65%) and anticipated starting salary greater than $200,000 (89%). More residents planned to retire by age 60 years (23% vs 7%) (P<.001). Thirty-eight percent of residents reported having changed career plans during residency, citing work-life balance as the most important factor (89%).


Trainees' career expectations appear to evolve over time moving toward a higher likelihood to pursue private practice, work fewer hours, and retire earlier despite large educational debt. It is critical that the specialty understand these trends when planning to address national workforce needs.

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