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Psychiatry Career Outlook: How the ‘New Normal’ Could Impact Your Job Search

Jackson Physician Search
June 3, 2020

A recent APA poll revealed that 36% of Americans feel coronavirus is having a serious impact on their mental health and 59% feel it is having a serious impact on their day-to-day lives. As we progress towards the new normal, it appears already high levels of anxiety may increase the need for mental health professionals and that could exacerbate the psychiatry shortage.

A steady increase in demand means that psychiatrists have more options to find a practice opportunity that fits their career and personal life than ever before. Here are a few ways psychiatry professionals can ensure they are maximizing their career opportunities.

Pursue an In-demand Sub-specialty

If a psychiatrist is willing to pursue additional training, there are a variety of sub-specialties to consider. Aside from child, adolescent, and geriatric psychiatry, there are also opportunities for forensic (legal) psychiatry, addiction psychiatry, administrative psychiatry, public health, military, and psychiatric research. Other highly specialized training includes psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic institutes.

Choose a Setting that Fits Your Lifestyle

Like many physician specialties, psychiatrists can practice in a diverse array of clinical settings. Many (almost half) choose private practice, but beyond hanging out your own shingle, psychiatrists work in general and psychiatric hospitals, university medical centers, prison systems, nursing homes, and military settings.  Others choose rehabilitation centers, community clinics, educational settings, and hospice.

Another benefit of working in a high-demand specialty, psychiatrists can choose to expand the diversity and variety of settings and combine various practice settings.

Embrace Telepsychiatry

With no easy answers available for solving the ongoing shortage of psychiatric specialists, the federal government has eased restrictions on out-of-state licensure requirements to expand access to telepsychiatry treatment.  Overall, COVID-19 has driven an increased adoption of telemedicine services, which many industry experts predict will continue even after the pandemic is over. One of the largest telemedicine service providers, TeleDoc, is reporting more than 100,000 virtual appointments per week.  Telepsychiatry has been shown to be an effective way to maintain continuity and quality of care for patients, and previous studies have concluded that telepsychiatry assessments are a dependable method of assessment.

Take Advantage of the Demand

You’ve chosen a medical career that has been increasing in demand for the past twenty years, and now that you are established, you should feel free to find an opportunity that matches your aspirations.  With medical systems across the country clamoring for your services, take a moment to assess where you are at in your desired career path.

For example, if your goal is to retire in the country with some land and outdoor activities to fill your free time, you may be able to take a few steps in that direction today.  Rural health systems are some of the hardest hit for psychiatric care shortages, and now is the perfect time to prepare for what comes next. Or, if your current practice setting is not affording you the proper work/life balance that you desire, you should have little trouble finding a setting that works for your family and lifestyle needs.

Another aspect of a career as a psychiatric physician is a wide range of salaries from state to state and whether you will be practicing in a rural or urban location. To learn more about what compensation you can expect, visit the Jackson Physician Search salary calculator to access the most accurate compensation data.

The bottom line is that your psychiatry career is providing you with more options than you may have had in the past. Now is the time to take advantage of the demand your specialty is giving you.  Also, you don’t have to invest your own time to find the next opportunity, consider establishing a relationship with an experienced recruitment firm. A good recruiter will have a network of connections and the industry experience to help you land an opportunity that makes the most sense for you and your family.

Jackson Physician Search has a nationwide reach and a team of recruitment professionals with decades of healthcare industry experience. Contact our team today and let us work on finding the opportunity that meets your needs.

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