Hardships happen in life, whether we like it or not. For a physician, there is no exception. Even though your job as a physician is to heal, some things are still out of your control. Accidents happen, and they can happen to you.
What would happen to your family should you get injured and can no longer work? These are things to consider, as discouraging as they sound.
The good news is by preparing for the worst-case scenario, you’ll be covered if something should happen. There won’t be any surprises for you or your family.
Here are three ways you can begin to prepare for a life challenge starting today.
1. Write a Will
Even if you’re a relatively young doctor, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a will set up. The earlier you get this sorted out, the better. That way, your family won’t have to figure things out if something were to happen to you unexpectedly.
Here a few steps to take to set up a will:
- Figure out if you want someone to assist you or invest in a software program to create one.
- Choose an executor and decide who your beneficiaries are.
- Select a guardian for your children if you have any.
- Be specific and realistic about which people get what.
- Include a letter with your will if you’d like to elaborate on anything.
Initially, the process will be time-consuming. It takes a while to decide who gets what and everything else your will entails. But after you get your affairs in order, everything will be all set!
In the event of an accident, make sure your family is aware that you have a will. Also, let them know who to get in touch with and brief them on what you feel they should know ahead of time.
2. Get Disability Insurance
As a physician, having disability insurance is imperative. If you’re not familiar with it, it may not seem that important. Why would you need disability insurance when you have a high-paying salary? But having a high income is precisely why you need disability insurance.
As a doctor, you’re likely meeting with injured people every day. So, you know how it affects their way of life when they get injured. In some cases, your patients are unable to work and provide for their families.
It could be the same way for you. Say you weren’t able to do your job because you became injured, disabled, or ill. Not being able to work can lead to significant financial hardships, and you may not be able to pay your bills.
It’s stressful to think that you may not be able to care for yourself and your family financially. That’s why protecting yourself should be a top priority.
For more, see this article from Physicians Thrive that compares popular disability insurance companies to help you find the right provider.
3. Have a Back-Up Career in Mind
You’re passionate about being a doctor, and your career fulfills you. So selecting a different career path is probably the furthest thing from your mind. But if you’re the type of doctor who uses your hands, for example, then it’s wise to have a backup plan.
As a successful orthopedic, general, or plastic surgeon, it could be devastating if you were to get injured. Likely, you would no longer be able to operate.
So, decide on a different medical specialty that you could do instead. Or have another career in mind, such as focusing on business. (Consider taking online courses and get another degree on the side during your free time.)
It’s not fun thinking about your career-ending, but it’ll prepare your family. Plus, it’ll get you mentally ready if ever something should happen.
No one anticipates encountering a life challenge, but it can happen to anyone. By preparing ahead of time, you can rest easy knowing your family will know the proper steps to take.
Stay positive because that’ll help you stay well. And you’ll no doubt continue to thrive in your career as a talented doctor. But in case something goes amiss, you can feel at ease knowing you’re prepared just in case.