Revista argentina de cardiología
versión On-line ISSN 1850-3748
BORRACCI, Raúl A. et al. Relationship between Income Level of Cardiologists in Argentina and their Professional Quality of Life. Rev. argent. cardiol. [online]. 2008, vol.76, n.5, pp. 352-358. ISSN 1850-3748.
Job satisfaction is one of the most important variables related to the efficient operation of the organizations. In particular, professional quality of life (PQL) measured through questionnaires is useful to assess the degree of job satisfaction among physicians. However, some contradictory results arise while assessing the relationship between physicians income or salary and job satisfaction. Objectives To analyze the relationship between the income levels of cardiologists in Argentina and the PQL they have reported in a survey. Material and Methods Between April and June 2007 we conducted a survey to assess the PQL of cardiologists. The respondents answered a self-administrated questionnaire that consisted of 14 questions separated in three domains: perception of their working situation, personal accomplishment and expectancy in the future. The present study analyzed the relationship between cardiologists income and the aforementioned domains. The survey respondents reported their income levels choosing one out of four options: < $2,000, from $2,000 to $4,000, from $4,000 to $6,000 or > $6,000; then, these values were converted into American dollars (U$S) per year. Results Seventy hundred and seventeen cardiologists participated in the survey. The distribution of their income levels was as follows: less than U$S 8,000/year, 15.9%; U$S 8.000 - 16.000/year, 33.9%; U$S 16.000 - 24.000/year, 25%; and more than U$S 24.000, 25.2%. The perception of the working situation and of the degree of professional accomplishment improved in a linear form as the income level rose (p<0.0001 and p=0.0033, respectively). A similar pattern was observed when the physicians were asked about the hypothetical situation of studying Medicine again (p=0.0086), or choosing the same specialty (p=0.0019) or if they wished their offspring studied Medicine (p=0.0003). Cardiologists with an annual income greater than U$S 24.000 were those most satisfied with the career and with the specialty. Conclusions This study demonstrated a clear association between the income levels of the survey respondents and the degree of satisfaction measured by a PQL questionnaire. The perception of the working situation and of the degree of professional accomplishment improved in a linear form as the income level rose. Cardiologists with an annual income greater than U$S 24,000 were those most satisfied with the career and with the specialty, and they were more likely to agree with the hypothetical situation of studying Medicine again, or choosing the same specialty or wishing their offspring studied Medicine. The importance of knowing physicians PQL is based on the possible negative consequences of job dissatisfaction, which might lead to giving up the practice, to reduce the hours spent in medical practice, to reduce the quality of the practice and to transmit their own disappointment to their colleagues and to future physicians.
Palabras clave : Quality of Life; Job Satisfaction; Cardiology.