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I have received an award from the American Academy of Family Physicians for twenty five years of membership. That is, I joined when I started residency at OHSU in Portland, Oregon in 1993.

Twenty five years. Really? And since I finished residency, I have worked in rural medicine. A town of 9000 in Colorado for three years and then a town of 9000 in Washington State ever since. I delivered babies and did prenatal care from 1993 to 2009. I still would do it but the combination of hospital hostility and triple cost of malpractice and low pregnancy rate in our county currently has me stopped. I do not miss the 2 am babies. I always thanked the babies that chose to come during the day. Cancel clinic AND catch a baby! What fun!! Except when it was terrifying! But everything came out ok!

Doctor retirement age has been dropping. The average age of retirement used to be 70 and has dropped to 50. That was going on when I was in medical school. I read about the careers of women in medicine and statistics about doctors. It was fascinating. 95% of male doctors at that time had a wife who worked only at home. Only 50% of female doctors were married, and half of them were married to other doctors. The two groups could not be compared. And female doctors were more likely than male doctor spouses to cut their career back to be with children. Female doctors were less likely to have children than male doctors. Having a house husband, I was in a vanishingly small weird group. No data. I thought about both obstetrics and general surgery, but I wanted kids and was afraid I would not see them, so Family Practice was my choice.....

But anyhow, I haven't retired yet.....and with second offspring starting college next year, it doesn't look like I will any time soon. I just need a millionaire to name me as beneficiary for my brilliant work, darn it. Oh, and then they'd have to croak. Also I don't have a house husband or wife which is annoying. Mail order? Hmmmm.....

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