A Doctor's Money Magazine: The Journey Continues

Physician's Money Digest, September15 2004, Volume 11, Issue 17

Physician's Money Digest

Each year, as we enter the fallseason, I like to take the opportunityto thank our physician-readersfor their support of ourmagazine. This year, during trying timesfor many US businesses, that support isstronger than ever. According to the latestindependent readership scores (ie,the TV-like Nielsen ratings for physicianjournals), hasbeen the number-one cover-to-coverread magazine for 7 years in a row(1998-2004)*.

That measure of ongoing respectand support from very active primarycare doctors means the world to the editorsand publishers of this 10-year-oldmoney magazine. For me personally, it'sbeen a labor of love.

Ready or Not

It's a good thing, too. Because nowmore than ever, busy doctors need a practicalresource for personal finance informationthat they can understand andapply to their everyday lives. Why?

A May 2004 survey of about 710 ofour readers by Martin Akel & Associates,revealed that more than two thirds of youexpect that your medical practice revenuewill "decline or remain the same" in thenext 3 years. Moreover, about 90% saythat the ability to grow practice revenue is"much more" or "more challenging"today than it was 4 to 5 years ago. Thatmoney has to be made up somewhere.Enter personal financial management.

Really, when you consider the steepdecline in managed care and Medicarereimbursements, skyrocketing medicalmalpractice costs, and ever-growingoffice operation expenses (all issues ofconcern mentioned by our surveyedreaders), it's a wonder doctors can stillmaintain enthusiasm for the profession.As I've learned, though, you're a resilientand caring lot. You'll need to be.

On the business side, the good newsis that most of you know you face someobstacles and are up to the task. Morethan 8 of 10 readers say they have a"very strong" or "strong" desire to takeaction to insure their financial goals.We're pleased to learn that this bimonthlypublication plays a constructive partin helping busy doctors to reach thoseeconomic objectives. According to oursurvey on the magazine:

  • 94% say it gives them "greater insights and confidence" to make personal finance decisions.
  • 90% say it is "useful and practical."
  • 86% say its "condensed, fast-paced approach" is "very valuable or valuable."
  • 85% say it fulfills its mission of enabling "greater economic empowerment and freedom."
  • 84% say they read the magazine "soon after it arrives" or "sooner than most other publications."
  • 77% say the magazine is "unique" among all publications.

Proper Planning

Rich in America: Secrets to

Creating and Preserving Wealth

I was recently heartened to hear thewords of Jeffery Maurer, MBA, the CEOof US Trust and author of a compellingbook, (Wiley;2003). "Hard work makes you affluent,"

Maurer says. "But that's not enough tostay affluent. Having a financial blueprintthat matches your goals and career aspirationsand suits your family life is the bestway to help you preserve and enhanceyour wealth as efficiently as possible."Maurer's overall point is that hardwork and discipline can trump almostanything else. "There are few peoplewho can prosper without good financialplanning," he says.

Physician's Money Digest

In the end, I guess that's the most lastinglegacy of . Ithas become a regular part of many doctors'efforts to achieve financial securityand contentment. I maintain that fortoday's doctor, that task, while increasinglychallenging, is certainly obtainable.

Good health and fortune to all.

* PERQ/HCI; Focus (Multispecialty journals: GP, FP, IM, and DO-PC office-based)