Moonlighting by Psychiatry Residents: a Survey of Residents and Training Directors

Lee A. Robinson, Lauren M. Osborne, Alan J. Hsu, Henry Park, Melissa R. Arbuckle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: This study sought to assess the prevalence of moonlighting among psychiatry residents; the perceived effects of moonlighting on resident recruitment, education, and liability; and policies and practices governing oversight. Methods: In 2013, surveys were emailed to all general psychiatry residency programs that were accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and had available contact information (n = 183). Resident surveys were emailed to program coordinators with a request to forward the survey link to their residents. Results: Responses were received from 63 program directors (34% response rate) and 238 residents (about 5% of total general psychiatry residents). Most psychiatry program directors (95%) indicated that their programs permit moonlighting. Moonlighting participation increased with each year of training, culminating with 67% of fourth year residents. Most residents and faculty (87%) agreed that moonlighting enhanced resident education. Thirty-seven percent of program directors reported having no oversight procedures in place to monitor moonlighting activities. Thirty-nine percent of resident survey responders reported having no supervision for at least one of their moonlighting activities and only 9% reported always having access to on-site supervision. Conclusion: Though limited by a low response rate, this study found that moonlighting seems to remain prevalent among psychiatry residents and widely accepted by psychiatry residency training programs. There appears to be relatively limited program oversight for moonlighting activities, many of which seem to lack close supervision.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)46-50
Number of pages5
JournalAcademic Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 15 2019


  • Moonlighting
  • Psychiatry
  • Residency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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