Home Student & Career Tips 7 Common Challenges of a Medical Profession

7 Common Challenges of a Medical Profession


There are numerous challenges in the medical profession but a lot of times, we don’t seem to notice these challenges. Sincerely, those in the medical field are life-savers and should be considered heroes to humanity. These set of professionals render excellent health services such as:

  • Engaging with colleagues to maintain and improve the safety and quality of patient care.
  • Contribute to discussions in regard to improving the quality of services and
  • Raise and act on concerns about patient safety.
  • Demonstrate effective team working and leadership and use resources efficiently for the benefit of patients and the public.
Top 7 Challenges of a Medical Profession
If you want to build a career in the medical field, consider these challenges, not as a discouragement but a form of guide to get you prepared for the task ahead.

Obviously these professionals have a lot on their hands and above all the listed responsibilities, their primary duty is the care and safety of patients.

It’s also amazing how so many young and talented individuals want to give back to humanity in a noble manner by going into the medical field. However, this mindset tends to shake somewhat for so many prospective medical professionals as they go through medical school and the manic demands of residency. And those who survive these have new levels of challenges in the real medical world.

On the other hand, today’s physicians are experiencing a lot of trials and challenges, despite their diligence to the practice of medicine and the health of their patients. Here’s an overview of some challenges facing physicians in today’s medical profession:


Below are 7 challenges of the medical profession.

1.  Workload/Overload

According to the CareerBuilder Survey, the  shortage of professionals is hitting every healthcare organization, especially when it comes to nurses. 40% of medical professionals responded that they felt challenged by workloads at their jobs and when the pool was limited to only nurses, the number increased to 48%. This survey also showed turnover issues among healthcare professionals taking on additional responsibilities above their comfort zone. Who would want to add to an overload? Definitely not me! So, this goes the same with the medical professionals as there are few of them in the field and it wouldn’t be a good thing if they break down due to workload. We all need our medical healthcare professionals up and strong. Therefore, workload/overload is a serious challenge in the medical field that needs to be tackled.

2.  Stress and Burnout

Another challenge in the medical field is burnout of medical personnels. Unfortunately, this might seem like an individual or personal issue but can easily and seriously make a crack in the life of medical professionals, thereby becoming a challenge to the healthcare givers. According to research published in 2023 [1], 49.9 percent of healthcare workers reported experiencing burnout. Burnout can lead to

Top 5 Factors that makes the Medical Profession stressful:

  • Psychological pressure
  • Long working hours
  • Dealing with Difficult patients
  • Quick and life-changing decisions
  • Negative work environments

Many doctors work 70-80hours or even more, week-in-week-out and relatively little of their time is spent interacting with patients. Doctors and staff spend much time complying with new regulations, adapting to new technology and addressing the economics of maintaining a practice.

Burnout is certainly a challenge that once it affects medical professionals, it’s definitely going to affect healthcare activities.

Therefore, it is important to advocate for work-life balance initiatives in your workplace, such as flexible work schedules and appropriate training, to help manage the negative effects of long work hours.

3.  Lack of Adequate Training

Not giving employees the adequate training required can leave them confused and frustrated about their job role and this seem to be another deadly challenge in the medical field. In the medical field, Nurses specifically are very concerned about doing their jobs well and in a good environment than with the amount of money they make.

Healthcare workers need to be trained thoroughly from time to time as implementing training is essential in order to improve job performance and satisfaction.

4.  Lack of Time with Patients

20% of medical professionals felt challenged by an inadequate amount of time spent with patients, this is based on a survey. According to another CareerBuilder Poll, 57% of medical professionals said the number of providers per patient had gotten worse in the last 12months, compared to 32% that said it had stayed the same, while 11% thought it had improved.

When nurses were interrogated on the same question, 69% of them said the provider-patient ratio had gotten worse and only 4% thought it had improved. Lack of time with patients may be caused by an overload of administrative tasks or non-clinical assignments; 19% of health professionals felt challenged by too many administrative tasks, while 14% were frustrated by lack of interesting assignments.

Also, government regulations, private-pay requirements and the day-to-day hassles of running a business often make physicians spend less time with patients.

When there are inadequate staff, there won’t be enough patient interaction resulting in a workplace being less attractive to staff. Employers can maximize patient interaction by scheduling choices.

5.  Dealing with Incurable disease(finding cure)

Recently, a wide-spread of a virus namely COVID-19 of the Corona family popularly known as Global health pandemic has been a threat to human life worldwide and a challenge to medical professionals as they work tirelessly, day-in-day-out to get the cure for this deadly virus and the diseases it inflicts in the human body.

Medical professionals have probably always felt helpless and frustrated in situations such as the above mentioned. Despite their best efforts, it seems that doctors are losing the war against these microscopic enemies that are taking millions of lives all over the world. This is not restricted to COVID-19 alone but also many other deadly diseases lingering on the face of the earth terrorizing the human body. This is certainly a serious challenge in the medical field and in the world at large.

6. Technology Roadblocks

Adapting to rapidly changing  and life altering technology can be a challenge in the medical field as the healthcare sector  can be slow in adapting to such changes often because of regulatory and compliance issues. Additionally, implementing new technology, such as EHR software, can affect productivity and stress among healthcare workers especially when they are not properly trained.

To combat this challenge, employers should  provide adequate training to employees as they implement new software. Advocate for investment in technology that streamlines administrative work and improves patient care and employee satisfaction.

7.  Funding challenges

Majority of smaller and independent healthcare centres may be worried about funding issues. A big challenge is relying almost totally on a third party for reimbursement. The irony is that the onus of the increasing expenses is completely on the medical practitioners with those third parties, or the government not helping fund that.

For example, medical practitioners are required to use certain kinds of technology, such as the electronic health record, but they have to come up with the money to fund it. These types of challenges are driving more physicians to consider employment options or running their own healthcare service.


In summary, the medical field faces numerous obstacles that demand continual attention and creative solutions. These challenges range from long working hours, burnout, navigating healthcare regulations to delivering high-quality patient care amidst resource constraints. Furthermore, advancements in medical technology require ongoing education and adaptation.

The current global health system, including pandemics, emphasizes the importance of resilient healthcare systems and proactive approaches to emerging threats. Despite these hurdles, healthcare professionals’ dedication and collaboration drive progress and enhance patient outcomes. By confronting these challenges directly, the medical field can work towards a more sustainable and inclusive healthcare system.

Kudos to every medical professional, you all are heroes!


[1] Rotenstein, L. S., Brown, R., Sinsky, C., & Linzer, M. (2023). The association of work overload with burnout and intent to leave the job across the healthcare workforce during COVID-19. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 38(8), 1920–1927. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11606-023-08153-z

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