Insights into the patient-centered medical home model
Insights into the patient-centered medical home model

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9 truths about practicing medicine in the Midwest

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As physician recruiters at hospitals and health systems throughout the Midwest, we’ve heard all kinds of misconceptions about our part of the country: It’s all rural, except for Chicago. Every location is plagued by tornadoes. It’s hard to get to, and everyone is a farmer—or related to one!

Those misconceptions about the Midwest are held by many, including the physicians we recruit.

It’s always a pleasure, then, to share the TRUTHS about practicing medicine in the Midwest!

MINK Midwest, an association of in-house physician recruitment specialists from Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas, asked its network what physicians like best about living and practicing in the Midwest. Here are 9 factors they identified. 

Midwesterners are great people, hands down!

Great work ethic and dedication are hallmarks of Midwesterners. Our communities are full of patient, social, inclusive and humble people.

What it means for physicians: The patient population genuinely appreciates and respects physicians. The employers you’ll find in the Midwest also have a high family-oriented, friendly culture.

In the Midwest, it costs less to live well.

In the Midwest, professionals of all kinds get more bang for your buck! The cost of living is significantly lower than most parts of the U.S., and the tax rate is moderate.

What it means for physicians: With the most affordable housing in the country, and unprecedented green space for the money, physicians can put down roots in the Midwest for less than in other areas of the country. There are also plenty of lifestyle options from which to choose, from mid-size cities to metropolitan areas, farm life to suburban and loft city living.

Traffic is manageable in the Midwest.

We hear that, compared to the major cities on either Coast, Midwest traffic is a breeze!

What it means for physicians: A typical physician commute to work or home is under 30 minutes throughout the Midwest, even in the largest cities. Major cities, like Kansas City, Chicago, Des Moines, Omaha and Oklahoma City are easy to get to by car or nearby, manageable-sized airports.

The Midwest’s four seasons are unmatched.

Sunshine is abundant here year-round, even on the coldest winter days. Moderate winters provide some snow, and fall is romantically crisp. Even summers are hot but well-balanced in the Midwest!

What it means for physicians: Life in the Midwest provides all four seasons, each mild, to enjoy. Physicians don’t have to give up any of their favorite climates when practicing here!

In the Midwest, a variety of environments means something for everyone!
In the Midwest, a variety of environments means something for everyone!

The outdoors truly is GREAT!

There’s more to the Midwest than farms! There are lakes throughout the Midwest, perfect for swimming, kayaking and water skiing. The Midwest is also home to beautiful parks for hiking and exploring.

What it means for physicians: Physicians who crave outdoor activities find a home in the Midwest. There are plenty of opportunities for camping, fishing, boating and hunting—plus summertime vegetable and farmer’s markets.

Cultural opportunities are nearby.

The Arch in St. Louis is just one of the many attractions in large cities throughout the Midwest.
The Arch in St. Louis is just one of the many attractions in large cities throughout the Midwest.

More than 50 museums reside in the Midwest, showcasing everything from paintings to planets shipwrecks to U.S. presidents! Music festivals and venues also abound.

What it means for physicians: You don’t have to travel far from home to take advantage of cultural opportunities!

We’re avid sports fans.

In the Midwest, sports fans are passionate about their teams. In our communities, there are Major League Baseball teams, the National Football League, Major League Soccer, and NASCAR racing—plus options for recreational sports leagues of all kinds from kickball to rugby.

What it means for physicians: The Midwest is choc-full of athletic-minded people! Expect to find colleagues and patients interested in whatever practice you choose, whether its yoga, boxing, dance, weight-lifting, martial arts or another activity!

The Midwest is full of diverse communities.

Ethnic diversity events celebrate the multicultural Midwest and happen year-round. The rich ethnic fabric of the Midwest continues to grow and prosper, including African, African-American, Asian, Latino, Native American, Slavic, Mediterranean, and Middle Eastern communities.

What it means for physicians: Physicians looking for diversity among colleagues, friends and community can find it in the Midwest!

We’re hiring—and there are many physician jobs available!

The Midwest has physician opportunities in rural, urban, private practice and academic medicine settings. Our states frequently have open J1 waivers available for various provider types. Midwest states have many rural opportunities that meet the requirements of a variety of loan repayment programs, too.

What it means for physicians: No matter the environment in which you’re looking to practice, there’s an opportunity for you in the Midwest! Learn more about practicing in our communities at MINK.

Contributed by Terri Bangert, Katie Cole, Hillary Garcia, Debbie Gleason, Terri Houchen, Jill Mick, Brandi Nelson, Charlene Plotycia and Sasha Randolf.



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