Author(s): Wass CT, Rose SH, Faust RJ, Offord KP, Harris AM
To identify factors responsible in the selection of anesthesiology as a career by Mayo Clinic house staff (i.e., residents and clinical fellows); to evaluate their level of satisfaction with their choice of career and training program, and their perceptions of the future for anesthesiology trainees.
Cross-sectional analysis using a questionnaire survey of 67 house staff enrolled in the anesthesiology training program during the 1995-1996 academic year.
Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN.
Forty-eight (72%) of those surveyed responded to the questionnaire. Data were analyzed using the Chi-square and Mann-Whitney rank sum tests. A p-value less than or equal to 0.05 was considered statistically significant. The most frequently cited reasons for selecting anesthesiology as a career included the following: it is a "hands-on" specialty, it involves clinical application of physiology and pharmacology, and it provides immediate gratification in one's work. The most frequently cited reasons for selecting our training program were the diversity of training experience, prestige associated with Mayo Clinic, and employment opportunities following training. Forty-four (92%) felt downsizing of anesthesiology training programs was a national trend, 26 (54%) anticipated difficulty obtaining a job following training, and 16 (33%) felt they had future job security. Overall, 47 (98%) were happy with their career choice, and 40 (83%) would choose anesthesiology as a career if they were now graduating from medical school. All 1996 graduates found suitable employment without difficulty.
Our data indicate that selection of a career in anesthesiology and training program are strongly associated with concerns regarding educational experiences and postgraduate employment opportunities.