Doctor vs. UPS Driver

Screen Shot 2016-05-01 at 8.06.05 PM

Check out this site for further analysis but basically KEVIN PEZZI, MD figures out that it takes about 27 years for a doctor to approximately equal the lifetime earnings of a UPS driver working as many hours to become a doctor and then practice medicine.  Yeah, let that sink in.  Trust me it is worth the read but be warned, you will start crying after a while.

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  9 comments for “Doctor vs. UPS Driver

  1. William Green III MD
    May 7, 2016 at 10:38 am

    Another point regarding this is the UPS driver is earning a LOT more money relatively early in his/ her working career. This fails to take into account the “time value” of money, a dollar earned early in your career is worth more than in your 50-60’s. If the UPS driver (or school teacher, government worker, etc.) are “accumulators/ savers”, their savings have a MUCH longer time to grow & reinvest; especially when compared to MD’s, who typically do NOT earn any “real” money until after finishing their training. Usually that is in their 30’s (at the earliest)- for me it was exactly when I was 30 years old (college, medical school, 7 years internship/ residency). And it ignores all the school debt I had to pay off, that was like another house payment! That gives the UPS driver a TREMENDOUS head start to accumulating a sizable retirement account, especially when you look at inflation averaging 3% over long periods of time.

  2. Pat
    May 3, 2016 at 12:34 am

    “arf” asked on the post about Marty 2 days ago why everyone thinks they have a special claim on physicians. This post is a great example: for some reason society has decided there is a right to health care. The perverse inversion is that this arbitrary decision allows the mob to attack those who provide what it declares to be a right, and that is manifested as envy. There is nothing noble or compassionate about being despised or mad a scapegoat.

  3. Ben VR
    May 2, 2016 at 10:29 pm

    On my street the people that all retired in their 50s sold their businesses and moved to new locations. None of them were physicians, nor were they academic superstars.
    Our street has had 10 physicians. Seven children have decided to go to professional school… all of them to dental school … not one to medical school.

  4. Ben VR
    May 2, 2016 at 10:24 pm

    It is worse now.
    Chicago teachers making 110,000 a year for 1500 hours a year. Retire at 55 on 90% pay plus inflation adjustments.
    California firefighters making 150,000 a year for 48 hours on and then 96 hours off which includes sleeping and eating during the 48 hours on. Then retire at 52 on 100% of highest pay.

    All physicians make less per hour than these people, not including high tax brackets trying to make it in a shorter period, loss of benefits such as Roth IRA, time value of money invested early.
    Some physicians make more but only because they amass 150,000 hours of work (school, residency, hours) in their lifetimes compared to a government employee 50,000 hours worked.

  5. arf
    May 2, 2016 at 2:42 pm

    When I was looking at undergraduate colleges, I had an interview for a highly selective school I probably had no business applying to, but hey, I gave it a shot. Although I didn’t get in, I got a bit of advice from the person who ran the interview, who happened to be a doctor from that undergraduate college.

    I told him I wanted to be a doctor as well, for all the usual “serve humanity”, “academic challenge” reasons, but I did say that the field paid well.

    I remember his advice.

    “Nothing wrong with making a lot of money, but medicine is not the most efficient way to do it.”

    Take the effort you will expend for medical school. Four years undergraduate college, working hard to get high grades. Four years of medical school, harder still. Basically, you live and breathe medicine 24/7, socializing with other medical students. It’s about all you discuss. Then internship, working 60-80 hour weeks, they used the word “interned” for a reason, you were imprisoned in the hospital. Residency (including internship, I did the old rotating internship), at least three years, as much as five, sometimes more, depending on the field. You live poor as a churchmouse between the low pay and medical school debt.

    So, from high school, eleven, thirteen, maybe more years of living the line of work (medicine) 24/7 or nearly so, very little money in your pocket, significant debt.

    Take all that effort, all that dedication, put it into just about any endeavor. A plumbing business. A pizza joint. Just about any business. Live that business 24/7, plow back any money you have to get the business to grow, learn everything about the business to the depth you would have learned medicine.

    Nothing guaranteed in the world, but likely you would do better than most doctors.

    The doc told me that decades ago, let’s just say he told me that when disco was in fashion. But it’s true. I’ve seen lots of real-world examples, this is just one more.

    • Steve O'
      May 3, 2016 at 8:57 am

      A great deal of the educational rat race involves how you climb on the status scale. WHAT you do for a living is fairly much ignored. Everyone does a job that they despise, the conventional wisdom assures us – so go into a hideous occupation that allows you to summer in the Hamptons. That is part of the mindset.

      The next bias is that people go into certain low-level positions because they are saintly people committed to a saintly endeavor. Ministers, grade-school teachers, and now healthcare personnel (not the important ones, just the ones who deliver the care.) They all do what they do because of transcendental love. If they don’t care how much they are paid, why should the public?

      You will notice that we have turned many of the most essential occupations in furthering our society, and ghettoized them. They are members of the freak show that we patronize in public, and despise in private. Doctors, nurses and midlevels are all in the fast-lane to the ghetto, and nobody cares. A nearby state just cut Medicaid reimbursement by 5%-8% next year, and told the providers to “tighten their belts.”

      There is so much contempt for doctors as a group, that the rest of the population smirks when they see this – “serves those arrogant jerks just right, the heck with them!” In our culture, the Customer is King, and the Patient is Customer. This is the solitary cause for the mess they’ve made with pain management and narcotics. Put opiates on the menu, and punish the waiter for serving them.

      If I were cruel-hearted, I could not think of a worse punishment for the American people than the healthcare mess they will have by 2020. I may be noble-minded, and go to another country to practice; I certainly won’t be able to stand the mess we have here. “Get rid of the doctors, and wait for the magic to happen!” sounds like the Heaven’s Gate cult to me. Look it up.

  6. May 2, 2016 at 9:26 am

    Government interference and wealthy Administribbles have ruined the business of medicine in America. The quality of care shall follow.
    If any adult is not advising the young people that they know to avoid going into medicine, they are doing them a horrible disservice.
    Don’t give me your F()#%ing poetry about serving others. Those ‘others’ are just waiting to call 1-800-sue-any-doc-for-any-reason.

  7. Steve O'
    May 2, 2016 at 9:23 am

    The “money filter” reserves the profession of medicine as a whim of the cultured classes, when they wish to drop one of their dullard children into an “occupation” (ugh!) when they have to be kept away from the sheltered society.

    Some legacy offspring can be left to engage in appropriately indolent lives; some have to be given arts and crafts to busy themselves at, so that they don’t show up at Hilton Head or Jackson Hole very often. Medicine is the new “special ed” for the 0.1%’ers.

    Off to Yale as a legacy; some titled medical school; and a university appointment (in the Ivies, of course) with a juicy endowment to keep them in a lifetime of toys and research. Quality Management Faculty are booming these days down at the ‘Haven, I hear.

  8. Thomas Guastavino
    May 2, 2016 at 6:41 am

    Only way anyone should consider becoming a physician is if they had an “in”-Their college and med school tuition paid for and a practice to walk into.

Comments are closed.