University Medical Center of El Paso Physician Earned More Than $1M in 2009, Worked 109 Hours Per Week

The University Medical Center of El Paso's (Texas) medical director of the pediatric critical care unit and pediatric critical care transport team earned more than $1 million in 2009, but it came at the expense of 5,656 hours worked, or an average of 109 hours per week, according to an El Paso Times report.

The physician, who the newspaper did not name due to personal concerns about his and his family's safety, has earned more than $2.4 million since July 2008, including $482,000 so far this year.

More than half of the medical director's pay in 2009 was related to on-call duties, according to the report. He was on-call for 149 days with 24-hour care duty and received $3,600 per day, totaling about $536,000. UMC's chief nursing officer, Diana Fancher, said in the report the physician was doing the work of "at least 3.5 people" to get the pediatric critical care unit going, and he even had his own sleeping quarters in the hospital.

The physician's pay and on-call days have been decreasing as UMC has hired more pediatric intensivists. The physician said he didn't work the long hours for the money, but rather to set up a high-quality system of care for El Paso children that didn't exist previously.

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