Financial Preparedness, Loan Management, Physician Lifestyle

Almost half of physician survey respondents behind in financial planning

October 10, 2013

According to the 2013 Report on U.S. Physicians’ Financial Preparedness released by AMA Insurance, nearly half of the 2,365 physicians who responded to the survey consider themselves behind in preparing for the financial future of themselves and their families.

Those physicians reported gaps in personal financial knowledge and lack of confidence in financial decisions related to retirement savings, life and disability insurance coverage and estate planning. Female physicians trended behind male counterparts in many areas of personal financial preparedness. The report was based on a national survey conducted by AMA Insurance. Physicians of all ages and across many specialties were surveyed on a wide range of topics, including overall financial preparedness, personal financial planning, disability and other types of insurance, and retirement and estate planning. (Survey highlights are available at

Physicians Over Age 60 Remain Concerned About Retirement, Estate Planning, Long-Term Care    34% are concerned about having enough money to retire    6% are concerned about funding college expenses    19% are concerned about having the right estate plan    12% are concerned about having enough disability insurance    13% are concerned about having enough life insurance    4% are concerned about financially providing for patients    19% are concerned about funding long-term care

Regarding disability insurance, 77 percent of the responding physicians believe that disability income insurance is essential and 74 percent have a policy in place. However, 42 percent of those physicians have not reviewed their policies in the past five years or since they purchased it and physicians overall reported they are not confident that they have the right amount of disability protection for their current needs.

Only 57 percent of the physicians reported having an updated will. Additionally, only about half of them have end-of-life medical directives and a power of attorney in place. Overall, 44 percent of the women physician respondents did not have an estate plan at all versus 31 percent of male physicians.

Only six percent of the physicians polled said they are ahead of schedule in their retirement planning. Nearly half of the physicians polled, particularly those under age 50, stated they are behind in their retirement finances. Family medicine and internal medicine physicians were more likely to feel behind.

The survey showed that having enough money to retire is top of mind for mature physicians. More than half considered themselves ‘on track’ for retirement planning, with only 39 percent considering themselves behind versus 47 percent averaging across other age groups. In survey findings, 69 percent have over $1,000,000 in retirement savings and 26 percent have more than $3,000,000, but around 3 percent have less than $100,000 saved. Other key areas of concern for physicians over 60 are estate planning – having the right plan – and having enough money to fund long-term care.

The above points are just a sampling of the findings of the 2013 Report on U.S. Physicians’ Financial Preparedness. More highlights may be found at: For more information, visit the AMA Insurance website at

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