OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to investigate the education and quality of life of United States gastroenterology fellows. METHODS: A 3- page, 74-question survey incorporating a 5-point Likert scale was designed. All US gastroenterology fellowship program directors were contacted by mail and asked to distribute the survey to graduating fellows. Surveys were sent on 3/29/1998 and collected until 6/1/98. RESULTS: Fellows who would not train at the same institution again had less supervision, clinical instruction, research mentorship, and support services than those who would. Fellows who had loans had lower personal satisfaction scores than those who did not. Fellows who did not hold second jobs (moonlight) had higher job satisfaction scores. Those with vision or dental insurance had higher job and personal satisfaction scores. Regarding quality of life, only 23% of fellows agreed they were not overworked, 23% agreed they were not stressed, 25% agreed they were financially stable, 54% agreed they were happy with fellowship, and 84% agreed they were happy with their career choice. Regarding education, 56% agreed there was more emphasis on productivity than on education, 39% agreed they received adequate mentorship for research, 86% agreed there was adequate supervision, 48% of fellows agreed they had autonomy in making clinical decisions, and 41% agreed they had continuity of care in seeing patients. CONCLUSIONS: Most fellows were happy about their career choice and clinical instruction, but there were deficiencies regarding quality of life (stress, overwork, financial security), education (research support, continuity of care) and job benefits (health coverage).
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