Background: Medical students' attitudes and expectations about their future working life are changing. To hire the best talents from Generation Y, hospitals must pay attention to these factors to make working in patient care more attractive. However, little detailed knowledge about the professional and career expectations of today's medical students is available to date.
Method: In a nationwide online survey, a total of 9079 medical students from all German medical faculties returned the questionnaire. Twenty-one questions related to future career choices and work satisfaction, followed by 21 questions dealing with reasons for not working in patient care.
Results: Factor analysis yielded five factors: work-life balance, career, professional needs, working atmosphere, and prestige. A correlation analysis between these factors and respondents' socio-demographic data revealed significant correlations with sex, specialty choice, and marital/parental status. A correlation analysis with "reasons for not working in patient care" revealed that work-life balance, career, professional needs, and working atmosphere had high priority for both sexes.
Discussion: It is crucial to collect data on the work satisfaction of Generation Y, whose members are motivated and willing to perform in today's highly demanding work environment. However, sex-dependent/independent expectations must be met to make the medical profession more attractive, to overcome the Germany-wide shortage of physicians, and to attract young doctors to the hospitals.
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.