The United States is built on the ability to strive on one’s ability. For some, the choice is to build their own business, their own domain, their own community created from their talents and mastery of their given skills and the personalities that have allowed for their full fruition. Medicine is one of those skills that choice can dictate whether one is in private practice or in a network. Some physicians choose to be employed by networks and hospitals for various reasons. Location is often considered and hours have become more important as work and life balance has become a way of life more than in the past. Schedules are often more predictable than in private practice and the business aspect of owning one’s own practice is a substantial separate undertaking to be considered with great cogitation.

Private practice is either a choice for independence or a necessity as is sometimes the case in rural communities where larger networks do not hold an umbrella of protection over physicians where the population might not support the fiscal demands that a larger network might desire. So physicians in private practice quickly learn how to run a business not taught in medical school. They learn how to buy equipment and run payrolls and pay their own insurance costs which in some states and fields are prodigious even for the most expert of physician.

We must appeal to those that hold the power of our awaited vaccines to not forget those hard-working physicians in private practice who do not have the vaccine readily available to them as those in larger networks and hospitals. There is no email or message for them to report to a certain room to receive their vaccine. There are only questions of how and when and the larger concern of simply hoping that they too are remembered in the initial rounds.

These physicians spend their entire lives sacrificing for others. Those in private practice often do not have coverage to go on vacation or to attend their own children’s special events or graduations. They must stay within a certain amount of miles of the hospital when on call and if an emergency comes then all personal plans are immediately dropped. We must remember to make the vaccine available to those in private practice. A pandemic has caused hardships on every level. From life and death to employment and the need for safety precautions and supplies. Let us not overlook those that we turn to when we need their They are there for us, let us not forget to protect them.