BackTable / ENT / Podcast / Episode #62

The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household

with Dr. Bill Collins and Dr. Varun Varadarajan

In this episode of BackTable ENT, Dr. Varun Varadarajan and Dr. Gopi Shah discuss their personal advice and stories of navigating the challenges of a dual physician household with Dr. Bill Collins, chief of Pediatric Otolaryngology at the University of Florida College of Medicine.

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The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household with Dr. Bill Collins and Dr. Varun Varadarajan on the BackTable ENT Podcast)
Ep 62 The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household with Dr. Bill Collins and Dr. Varun Varadarajan
00:00 / 01:04

BackTable, LLC (Producer). (2022, June 21). Ep. 62 – The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from https://www.backtable.com

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Podcast Contributors

Dr. Bill Collins discusses The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household on the BackTable 62 Podcast

Dr. Bill Collins

Dr. Bill Collins is the chief of Pediatric Otolaryngology at the University of Florida College of Medicine

Dr. Varun Varadarajan discusses The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household on the BackTable 62 Podcast

Dr. Varun Varadarajan

Dr. Varun Varadarajan is a neurotologist and skull base surgeon practicing in Denver, Colorado.

Dr. Gopi Shah discusses The Challenges of a Dual Physician Household on the BackTable 62 Podcast

Dr. Gopi Shah

Dr. Gopi Shah is a practicing ENT at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, TX.

Show Notes

In this episode of BackTable ENT, Dr. Varun Varadarajan and Dr. Gopi Shah discuss their personal advice and stories of navigating the challenges of a dual physician household with Dr. Bill Collins, chief of Pediatric Otolaryngology at the University of Florida College of Medicine.

First, the doctors discuss the considerations involved in deciding to participate in the couples match. They agree that it is best to keep larger cities with multiple programs in mind when forming a rank list but note that the match can also be complicated if one partner is choosing to pursue a more competitive specialty. Additionally, although staying together would be ideal, couples might not have another choice besides engaging in a long-distance relationship during residency and fellowship. Dr. Collins highlights the importance of finding program directors and other mentors who can help to maintain value in relationships during training. During residency applications and beyond, he emphasizes that communication, honesty, and compromise are key to sustaining a strong relationship.

Next, they discuss raising children in dual physician households. All three doctors agree that there is no “perfect” time to have children because it depends on the circumstances and preferences of every couple. If a couple wanted to have a child during both of their residencies, they would also have to consider the long uncontrollable hours of residency as well as the need for extensive child care. Additionally, Dr. Collins emphasizes that physician schedules will remain busy, even after residency, so it is important to schedule concrete family time sooner than later. Dr. Shah mentions the difficulty surgeons have with separating work from home and Dr. Varadarajan encourages them to devote quality time to their kids before getting on their phones to answer emails and finish notes.

Lastly, the doctors consider scenarios in which one partner is seeking a job change. Although being further along in their careers and having older children may complicate the job search and moving demands, all three doctors agree that decisions should be made for the overall good of the family. Thus, all factors and possibilities should be considered and discussed. Finally, Dr. Shah emphasizes the importance of having discussions about family planning with medical residents and medical students in order to open channels for advice and mentorship.

Disclaimer: The Materials available on BackTable.com are for informational and educational purposes only and are not a substitute for the professional judgment of a healthcare professional in diagnosing and treating patients. The opinions expressed by participants of the BackTable Podcast belong solely to the participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views of BackTable.

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