More than one-third of Australian doctors don’t want to retire

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SYDNEY, March 20 (PNA/Xinhua) — Researchers have found that one-third of Australian doctors over 55 have no plans to stop practising medicine at the retirement age of 65, it has been revealed Monday.

The survey from Flinders University, the University of New South Wales and the University of Sydney asked 1048 doctors questions relating to retirement.

The findings suggest that professional and psycho-social factors were almost as important as age when deciding whether to leave medicine, with 38 percent of doctors wishing to prolong their careers past retirement age.

A possible reason for this growing trend is that “being a doctor is so closely linked with self-identity” and a sense of purpose, making hard for practitioners to walk away, the study said.

Other factors that keep doctors working past retirement age include financial stress and the reluctance to leave work in the absence of a suitable replacement.

The report notes that doctors feel obliged to wait until they feel their replacement is fully ready to take over.

“Our results support the view that delaying retirement by doctors may be related to the primacy of work compared with other life roles,” the study says.

“The results may be used to develop educational programs that support the transition to and improve adjustment to retirement.”

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