Summary: Currently, the market for orthopaedic trauma surgeons is varied. The market consists of university employed, university private, medical group employed, medical group private, private employed, private contracted, and private. Each option has its positives and negatives. The orthopaedic trauma surgeon needs to determine which setting is appropriate for his/her given needs and wants. An experienced mentor(s) is invaluable for advice and guidance. The surgeon then needs to find an administrative leader to initiate, implement, and evaluate certain processes to succeed.
The orthopaedic trauma surgeon (OTS) employment market is fluid and variable. The trauma center setting can be level 1, 2, 3, or none. The organizational setting can be a university, a system, and/or a private trauma center. The employment organization can be employed, contracted, private practice, or none.
The OTS employment pool is also varied. Approximately 2 decades ago, about 15–20 graduating orthopaedic surgery residents selected a fellowship in orthopaedic trauma surgery. Today, for whatever reasons, there are over 70 orthopaedic trauma surgery fellows graduating each year.
The OTS requires a full understanding of his/her wants/needs. The surgeon should then determine the hospital setting appropriate and complimentary to his/her wants.1–3 Inappropriate surgeon/hospital match, surgeon/practice match, surgeon wants, and/or hospital wants will result in an unproductive and disruptive environment. An experienced and objective mentor(s) is invaluable.4 Once this match is determined, the OTS should also determine the required or needed list to establish a successful environment for optimal trauma care delivery and OTS longevity.
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