Best Places to Practice to Avoid Burnout

Leigh Page


May 10, 2017

In This Article

Which States Rate High for Well-Being?

14. Seattle, Washington

The Basics

  • Washington offers many outdoor attractions, but many residents don't partake.

  • Physicians face lower risk of having too many patients, but the risks of being sued are greater.

  • Seattle is a very popular large city, but it also has fairly high stress.

State Profile: Washington residents curse less often than any other state, according to a 2013 survey.[4] The state embraces clean living too. It is ranked the 12th most livable, the 12th happiest, and the 18th least stressed state. It has plenty of outdoor attractions.

Relief for Doctors: The state has the ninth healthiest population in the country and the fifth highest number of office-based primary care physicians. The medical board has the seventh fewest medical board disciplinary actions in the nation, but doctors face the 11th highest number of malpractice lawsuits.

City Profile: Seattle, home of grunge music, is rated the sixth coolest city, the 14th best music scene, and the 19th best sports city. Despite the rainy weather, it is ranked the fifth most bike-friendly, the eighth most walkable, the second most dog-friendly, and the least obese city in the nation. It has been ranked the third most liberal city and the second best large city overall but also is rated the 10th most stressed city.

15. Stamford, Connecticut

The Basics

  • Connecticut is highly rated for well-being and is relatively safe.

  • The state has a relatively healthy population; physicians face a fairly low number of lawsuits.

  • Stamford is rated highly for livability and safety, but it is expensive.

State Profile: Connecticut is fiscally conservative in wealthy areas near New York City. It ranks as the second most livable state, the seventh safest state, and has the sixth lowest violent crime rate, but it ranks 16th lowest in well-being. It is rated the 22nd best state for golf, but it has the sixth highest cost of living.

Relief for Doctors: The state has the sixth healthiest population in the country. Physicians face the 13th lowest number of malpractice lawsuits, and the medical board has the ninth fewest medical board disciplinary actions in the nation. The state is in the middle of the pack in terms of physician income, insurance coverage, number of office-based primary care physicians, and patients with employer-based insurance.

City Profile: Stamford, located in prosperous Fairfield County, has been rated the best city in Connecticut,[5] the 10th best city for families in the country, and the 16th safest city in the United States. However, it has a very high cost of living—offering "some of the best living money can buy," according to Kiplinger.[6] But the company added that "crime is low, and schools are top-notch."

16. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The Basics

  • Pennsylvania is relatively safe and has a low divorce rate.

  • Physicians here are fairly plentiful and have a relatively well covered patient population.

  • Pittsburgh ranks high in safety and provides lots of diversions from work.

State Profile: Pennsylvania, a state loaded with city parks and farmers markets, is often rated in the middle on well-being issues: 23rd least-stressed, 30th highest level of well-being, and 34th happiest state. It has been ranked the 14th safest state, with the fifth lowest divorce rate, and is rated the 11th best state for golf.

Relief for Doctors: Patients have relatively good access to quality healthcare because the state has the eighth highest level of employer-sponsored insurance and the ninth highest rate of health insurance coverage. The state also has a relatively good physician supply, with the eighth best ratio of primary care physicians to population. Pennsylvania physicians are in the middle of the pack in other indices used for this review.

City Profile: Pittsburgh, known for its sports, culture, and food, provides a lot to do outside of work. It has been ranked as the third best sports city, the 20th most bike-friendly city, and the 21st best music scene. Pittsburgh is cited as the third safest city and the best city to relocate to, with the sixth best school system, but it has also been rated as the third most stressed city.


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