Ophthalmology Business

NOV 2012

Ophthalmology Business is focused on business topics relevant to the entrepreneurial ophthalmologist. It offers editorial, opinion, and practical tips for physicians running an ophthalmic practice. It is a companion publication of EyeWorld.

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Retirement done right, part 4: Moving on by Stephanie Graham Contributing Writer Editors' note: This is the fourth and final installment in Ophthalmology Business' series on retirement. The first three parts can be found online at ophthalmologybusiness.org. Y ou've decided that it's time to retire, and you've taken all the major steps toward the big day: You've built up your practice, assigned responsibilities to others, and even set a date. All that's left to do is actually retire. But it's that final step in the process that can be the hardest for some. I. Howard Fine, M.D., Oregon Eye Associates, Eugene, Ore., and his partners, Richard S. Hoffman, M.D., and Mark Packer, M.D., and psy- chologist Tom Fauria, Ph.D., partici- pated in a panel discussion on retire- ment that has been the focus of a series of articles in Ophthalmology Business. Clinic administrator Laurie Brown, C.O.E., and medical consult- ant Bruce Maller also contributed to the discussion. The series was intended to provide ophthalmolo- gists with a roadmap for a successful retirement experience and to make that final step a bit easier to take. In this, the fourth and final part of the discussion, the panel talked about the actual process of moving on, and shared their thoughts on the value of communicating a plan ahead of time and the importance of early post-retirement activities. Using Dr. Fine's retirement as an example, panel members shared their insight and some of the steps they took as a team to make the transition a smooth one for all involved. What was evident throughout the panel's conversation is the importance of teamwork. Under ideal circum- stances, the retiring physician and the practice should work together and a retirement plan should be developed. And don't dismiss the option of transitioning to part-time first before retiring completely. Read more about how it can benefit both the physician and the practice. The panel also offered a unique takeaway point for everyone, regard- less of how close you may be to retiring: Establish a work-life balance now. Get involved with hobbies and interests outside of ophthalmology. Without these activities, Dr. Fauria said, "it's much more difficult to make the kinds of life choices that are most healthy." Dr. Hoffman agreed. "You really have to have those outside interests to help you make the transition [into retirement]," he said. Ultimately, retirement can be viewed as a series of subtle shifts in work-life balance, and as Dr. Fine discovered, those shifts can even be a bit entertaining. "I think the single thing that has given me a sense of amusement is that I go to bed at night without setting the alarm." The transcription of the final portion of the panel discussion follows. Dr. Fine: It wasn't terribly diffi- cult for me to think about early post- retirement activities. What I did after the final sale document and date was recognize that I still liked many of my activities and that I would like to be able to maintain at least some of them. I did not give up my medical school appointment. I'm still a clinical professor at the medical school, and I go to the operating room with residents, which I enjoy. I 14 Ophthalmology Business eZine • November 2012 continue to be busy as the president of the International Intra-Ocular Implant Club. That has kept me connected and challenged with some responsibilities. I've also continued on the Executive Committee of ASCRS, an organization that I truly love. That has also kept me in the game without burdening my part- ners. They allowed me to continue

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