Finding your first maternal-fetal medicine (MFM) job after fellowship can be a stressful time, but it doesn’t have to be. With some planning — and networking — the job search will go more smoothly.
Experts recommend starting your job search 10 to 14 months before completing your fellowship. If you apply earlier, the practice will likely ask you to reach out again toward the end of fellowship, according to HCPLive.
Ann Taggart, a clinical recruiter with Pediatrix® Medical Group, agrees: “Most practices will consider you in the fall of your final year of fellowship. Sometimes a practice will be able to hire a fellow during his or her second year, but that’s still somewhat early.”
Since your first MFM job probably won’t be your last MFM job, the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine recommends looking for a position that you can commit to for at least five years.
How to start your MFM job search
One way to secure your first MFM job is to explore employment options where you did your residency or fellowship. Another option is to reach out to the physician groups you worked with during your training.
The advantage of “going with what you know” is that you already have a good feel for the work environment, the MFM team and practice leadership. And, you’re already familiar with the location and the population the hospital serves. However, the disadvantages include that you may miss out on a better opportunity and that you may have less negotiating power if there isn’t other competition for your services and talent. You also may need to re-establish yourself as an attending physician for those who worked with you earlier in your training.
No matter where you choose to practice, you’ll want to sign a contract at least four months before the job starts to leave enough time for credentialing, which can take up to 90 days if you already have your full license.
Read “Interview tips for your first MFM job” for more job-search advice.