Wise Information for Healthcare Employees



403(b) Story: Women in Health Care Work Hard for Their Money Yet Still Worry About Financial Security

Women and health care field

  • Women continue to dominate the health care industry, outnumbering men by almost 10:1 in nursing
  • Women are earning approximately 48% of the medical doctorates that are awarded each year 

Key findings

  • Many women believe they work harder for their money than their money works for them. Female health care professionals especially agree, as a majority of them (80 percent) share this sentiment.
  • 51 percent of female health care professionals are worried about not having enough money to last them through retirement. While women are often strong savers, 39 percent lack confidence when it comes to investing wisely for their retirement, versus 29 percent of men who report the same.

Confidence gap among health care professionals

  • Despite the progress women have made in the workplace, there still remains a confidence gap when it comes to women and money. For example, approximately half of female health care employees do not feel confident when choosing where to invest money (51 percent), compared to 34 percent of men. 
  • 43% of women surveyed don't have time to properly dedicate to their finances
  • 41% of women surveyed don't have much experience with finances
  • 39% of women surveyed haven't researched investment options

Women in health care are eager to learn

  • 74% of women surveyed are motivated to learn more about finances in the next 12 months
  • 92% of women surveyed want to learn more about financial planning
  • Women’s eagerness to learn is not always reflected in their actions. Sixty percent of female health care professionals who are offered guidance don’t take advantage of it 
  • Approximately one in four (23 percent) females in health care professions have never sought out financial advice from a professional but 82 percent would be motivated to do so in the future 
  • 83 percent of women who have not taken advantage of workplace retirement guidance would be motivated to do so if: their employer provided a class during work hours or had experts available to wlak them through retirement plan options (42%); they knew the provider would use financial terms they would understand (31%)

About the study

The Fidelity Investments Money FIT Women Study was conducted online between October 6th and October 30th, 2014 among 1,542 American Women Ages 18+. All respondents were employed or retired and had to have a qualifying retirement plan such as a 401(k); 403 (b); 401(a) or 457 (margin of error +/- 2.5%). In addition, 446 women in health care and 384 women in higher education, fitting the same criteria, were interviewed for a specific look at women in these industries. Fidelity Investments was not identified as the sponsor and the survey was conducted by Kelton, a leading global insights firm.