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One resident and her husband that I have talked to have $500,000 in medical school loans between the two of them. Imagine a $5000/month payment for 10 years on any level of income"

If they are successfull and each making $125,000 or $200,000 apiece, I'm not sure that is an impossible situation. I expect that these folks expect to more than make back their educational costs.

...If only these were the starting salaries for pediatricians and internists. Around here, the average starting salary for a pediatrician is $70,000-$90,000/year. An internist wouldn't make much more, but I don't have numbers. The pediatrician could expect to make up to $120-150,000/year eventually, if their pracice becomes especially successful, but only after a number of years (15+). This means that at the time of repayment, their salary will only begin to approach $100K. Keep in mind that the $30K/year repayment comes off pre-tax (interest is tax deductible for the first 5 years of repayment).

This leaves them with 70K/each, taxed at the 28-39% federal tax brackets. Don't forget that malpractice insurance can cost $10,000-$20,000/year. Also keep in mind that they can expect to work 6-7 days/week and at least one night/week.

$50-60K/year is not bad of course, but consider that they had to go through 7-8 years of post-college education to get to the point of making a decent living. I guess what I'm saying is, if you want to go into medicine, do it because you really want to help people, it's not the pot-o-gold that some people think it is.


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