How many of us doctors have time to read? Between the clinic and the hospital, it is often very difficult to take a break. However, there is one place where we get a built in break, our cars. The late motivational speaker, Zig Ziglar, once said that if we are looking to improve our business and our life, look no further than the drive to work. By listing to educational audiotapes and CDs, you can have "an entire university in your automobile."
Most of us reserve our time in the car for listening to music, or catching up on current events. So why not be more productive and use that time to educate yourself? I remember a few physician mentors from medical school as well as my father (a pediatrician), would often listen to audiotapes to claim CME credit. Today, with the advent of podcasts and sites like Audible.com, we are privy to podcasts on thousands of niche topics designed for specific demographics, including physicians.
As a business owner, I often spend a few days each month visiting different clinics. During my rides, I’ve discovered a number of different podcasts that have helped me improve my medical practice.
In terms of podcast recommendations, as someone who has been a podcaster myself, I know it can be very difficult to record consistently. For this list, I specifically chose podcasts that are current, and have consistently released new content over the last year. I excluded podcasts that were focused on CME or catered to one specialty, preferring general information that could help a majority of docs. Here are my top choices:
1. Freedom Formula for Physicians Podcast: Pretty auspicious title, right? Hosted by financial consultant Dave Denniston, the goal of the podcast is to "help doctors slash their debt, slash their taxes, and live a liberated lifestyle." Denniston has produced over 100 informative episodes tailored to educating doctors with financial and business advice. The podcast covers everything from student loan refinancing, to reducing malpractice premiums. Denniston uses his podcast as a way to cover topics many doctors never learned in medical school.
2. Docs Talk: The podcast title pretty much sums it up. Two Texas-based physicians share their views on healthcare, the science of medicine, and "everything in between." I especially enjoyed the back and forth camaraderie of the two doctors, and they often give insight on what’s going on in today's news and how it may relate to your patients. I would compare the podcast to eavesdropping at your local hospital's doctor's lounge.
3. Docs outside the Box: Practicing surgeon Dr. Nii Darko spotlights physicians "thriving in non-traditional career paths." Dissatisfied being an employee, Dr. Darko transitioned to locum tenens and along the way ran into doctors leading strong, fulfilled lives. "If I had known some of these stories or met these people during my climb up the ladder, maybe I would have done things a bit differently," he says. From docs running startups, to flipping real estate, this is definitely a podcast to listen to if you have dreams of being a physician entrepreneur.
4. The White Coat Investor Podcast: Although relatively new to the podcast world, Dr. James Dahle has helped thousands of doctors get a firm hold of their finances with his groundbreaking finance blog. Now through podcasting, you can get your financial advice on the go. This is the site I share with residents and young doctors to curtail their medical school loans.
5. Physicians Practice Podcast: I may write for this website, but it would be a disservice to not highlight the wealth of information freely available for both young and old practicing physicians. The host, Gabriel Perna, does a great job bringing together information that is essential for today's doctors. From practice policy, to the latest news on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), make sure you download a few episodes before your next commute.