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Pathology Job Market Assessment. Sharon Bihlmeyer, MD, FCAP Michael S. Brown, MD, FCAP. We Set out to Gain Initial Insight into the Following…. Is it difficult to find a job following residency or fellowship? If it is difficult, why is it difficult – and how difficult is it?

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Pathology Job Market Assessment

Sharon Bihlmeyer, MD, FCAP

Michael S. Brown, MD, FCAP


We Set out to Gain Initial Insight into the Following…

  • Is it difficult to find a job following residency or fellowship?
  • If it is difficult, why is it difficult – and how difficult is it?
  • Are residents finding it necessary to do multiple fellowships to be competitive in today’s market place?

CAP Survey Overview

We surveyed a CAP Member Research Panel (258 CAP Fellows who have been in practice for 1-5 years.)

Results were at a 90% confidence level with a +/- 5% margin of error.

cap fellow age statistics
CAP Fellow Age Statistics
  • 4018 CAP Fellow members are 55 and older.
    • This accounts for 36% of total Fellow members
    • Ages 55 through 65 account for 78% of the 55+ group
  • What does this mean?
    • High percentage “soon to retire” which could significantly open up the job market

*Based on March 2009 CAP data

u s age statistics
U.S. Age Statistics
  • The older population (65+) numbered 37.9 million in 2007 which is an increase of 11.2% since 1997.
  • U.S. population age 65+ is expected to double in size within the next 25 years.
  • Persons reaching age 65 have an average life expectancy of an additional 19 years.
  • The age group 85+ is now the fastest growing segment.

*based off date taken from the US Census Bureau and Dept. Health and Human Services

what does this mean
What does this mean?
  • The need for Pathologists will increase due to the aging population.
    • Additional tests required
    • Higher likelihood of chronic conditions
  • As Pathologists retire there will be a significant increase in available positions.

Why did you do a fellowship?

Interest in the Specialty 90%

To be more competitive for jobs 82%

Need for additional skill training 81%

The job I wanted was not available 7%


How many jobs did you apply for?

One 22%

Two 16%

Three 17%

Four 9%

Five+ 36%


How many offers did you get?

One 44%

Two 29%

Three 19%

Four+ 8%


Were you offered a position in your preferred geographic location?

City 40%

State 17%

Region of US 30%

No 13%


Did the interviewers care about the number of publications you authored?

Yes 33%

No 47%

Don’t Know 20%


How important was networking and personal contacts in finding leads for jobs?

Extremely/Very Important 84%


How difficult was it to find a job?

Mostly Easy 44%

Neutral 33%

Mostly Difficult 22%


How happy are/were you in your first job?

Mostly Happy 62%

Neutral 23%

Less Happy 15%


What was the biggest barrier to overcome in finding the first job?

Positions in geographic preferred area 55%

Shortage of positions in general 32% (yet 97% got jobs!)

Positions in preferred practice setting 31%


What CAP career resources did you find valuable in your job search?

Open positions on the Online Career Ctr 48%

Networking at the annual meeting 16%

Posting my resume online via OCC 14%

Use of the CAP online membership directory 11%


During residency or fellowship training, what opportunities did you find most helpful in your job search?

Working with pathologists in my training program 70%

Being introduced to Colleagues by well-known pathologists who trained me 58%

Attending local state society meetings 25%


SummaryGood News!

  • Job market is competitive but not overly saturated.
  • 97% got offers with the average applicant getting two offers.
  • 88% did a fellowship with the majority doing one.
  • Positions in desired cities, states or regions are more difficult to locate.
  • The majority found it relatively easy to find a job – with only 1 in 5 having difficulty.
summary good news
Summary Good News!
  • A significant majority (62%) were happy in their first job.
  • Demographics of the specialty and of the US population indicate a dramatic growth in the demand for Pathologists.