It’s a good question in today’s climate of increasing patient numbers and complexity. Specialities that offer you the illusion of more control can seem attractive. But Emergency Medicine picks you, and can offer an exciting and varied career.
For me the immediate attraction was the variety of patients and autonomy that EM gave me. However, increased autonomy brings increased responsibility. You quickly realise that your actions have direct consequences on patient outcomes. And to get the most out your career in EM you must keep your knowledge & skills (that includes the soft stuff) up to date.
Despite all the people in ED you can feel lonely, but you need to know this is just an illusion. Whatever, issue you are having it has probably affected your colleagues. So talk about it, you will be surprised just how much support there is if you ask. ED is a community, and nothing is more important than the team.
As I mentioned before, a career in EM can be varied, not just the day-to-day patient contact but also what else you do. One of the great things about EM is that its more or less shift based, allowing you to develop your interests beyond the shop-floor. (your free time does increases with seniority)
For me I have been able to develop my teaching roles, and now get to teach not just within the department but at University and in Sweden. The department also supports my work with UK-Med. And there’s a world of choice beyond that; Pre-Hospital, ICU, Acute Med, IT, Management, national and international committees. There is something out there for all interests, and for me keeping my job varied only increases my love of EM.