Three radiologists who found careers outside of the reading room.
As our recent article on alternative careers for radiologists showed, radiologists aren’t necessarily sticking to their current career track for life. Due to burnout, job issues or other interests, some radiologists are finding satisfaction in other careers. Our last piece showed how to make a change. In this slideshow, we feature stories from three radiologists using their passions and talents to pursue careers outside of the reading room.Â
Ronak Talati, MD is pursuing the best of both worlds, with a full time radiology career at Zwanger-Pesiri in Long Island, New York, and as a part time software developer. It’s what career counselor and former radiologist Peter Moskowitz, MD calls a portfolio career, doing at least two different jobs that bring in income.
Talati studied math and computer science in college and his first career was in programming, working on mapping software.
Having a nontraditional career inside the radiology space can be challenging, both from a time management perspective, and also the optics to colleagues.
“I always thought that radiologists and other doctors were laser-focused on medicine. But that’s not the case. A lot of people want to do something else. It’s the human drive we have to work on something else or tinker on the side.”
After completing two years of radiology residency, Hamblin left medicine to become the health editor of The Atlantic website.
During medical school, Hamblin chose to specialize in radiology because he enjoyed the case conferences, the idea of solving puzzles, and being a doctor’s doctor.
He looks at it as having tried a career for two years (radiology residency) and then deciding to do something else, as opposed to changing careers after seven years (medical school, internship, and residency).
Hamblin said that when he took The Atlantic job, he didn’t intend to leave clinical practice forever.
Hamblin said a lot of doctors, and especially medical students, are interested in his journalism career, though he can’t recommend that they go into the field.
He wished there were more opportunities for doctors to take sabbaticals from medical education training and practice, so the physicians could explore other options without quitting medicine cold turkey.
Robert Pakter, MD, practiced radiology in the San Francisco Bay Area for 15 years, with another 10 years in Tucson, Arizona, after doing fellowships in body imaging and interventional radiology.
Pakter always had many interests outside of medicine, including writing and recording music, and writing a medical thriller called In Extremis.
Pakter learned that becoming an entrepreneur with an MD after your name doesn’t necessarily carry any weight.