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Taking a career break for doctors and nurses

Taking a Career Break for doctors and nurses 


In the fast-paced world of medicine, finding the time to focus on personal well-being and pursuing other passions can be a challenge. However, there is a growing trend among doctors and healthcare professionals to take a career break, allowing them to explore the world and prioritize their mental and physical health. In this blog post, we interview Cyra and Kai, two medical professionals who are currently on a year-long career break, to understand their motivations, challenges, and experiences. Join us as we delve into their journey and discover the possibilities that await those who take the leap.

The Decision to Take a Career Break

Cyra and Kai both have demanding careers in medicine, with their work often taking a toll on their well-being and personal lives. Recognizing the need for a break, they made the brave decision to step away from their respective roles and take a year off. Cyra, a chartered accountant and doctor, shares her desire for a long overdue honeymoon, while Kai, a urology registrar, emphasizes the importance of prioritizing mental and physical health. The couple’s shared passion for travel and spending time with their dog, Kevin, influenced their decision to embark on this life-changing journey.

Navigating the Challenges of a Career Break

Taking a career break is not without its challenges. Cyra and Kai faced several hurdles when planning their year-long adventure. They had to coordinate work schedules, secure necessary paperwork for travel, and find a solution for Kevin, their furry family member. The couple used various strategies, including renting out their home and purchasing a motorhome, to ensure a smooth and financially feasible break. They also shared valuable insights on managing costs while traveling and making the most of available resources.

Dealing with Professional Considerations

When considering a career break, many healthcare professionals worry about the implications for their careers and professional development. Cyra and Kai shed light on their experiences with their program directors and educational supervisors. While some initial skepticism existed, they received overwhelming support from their colleagues, who emphasized the importance of personal well-being and the enriching experiences that come with a career break. They also discuss the impact on their pensions and options for making voluntary contributions during this time.

Advice for Others

Based on their personal experiences, Cyra and Kai offer advice and guidance to others considering a career break. They highlight the significance of early planning, financial stability, and open communication with program directors and supervisors. They also provide insights for international medical graduates and the implications a career break may have on their immigration status.


Taking a career break is not a decision to be taken lightly, but for many healthcare professionals, it can be a transformative experience. Cyra and Kai’s story serves as an inspiration for those seeking to prioritize well-being, explore the world, and pursue personal passions. Their journey highlights the challenges and rewards of a career break and offers practical advice for those considering this path.

In the end, a career break can offer a much-needed respite in a demanding profession, allowing individuals to recharge, reflect, and return with fresh perspectives. It’s a chance to prioritize your physical and mental health, pursue personal dreams, and nurture important relationships. So, if you find yourself longing for a break, take a leap of faith and make it happen. Just like Cyra and Kai, you may discover a world of possibilities waiting for you!

This week’s Triage episode originally aired on our brand new podcast: What Medical School Doesn’t Teach Us, and has Cyra and Kai talking about his travels with his wife and dog, Kevin.

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Music credit: MetzMusic on YouTube.

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