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Many Physicians Saw Compensation Increases in 2014

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As physicians who are looking for jobs, you may be wondering which specialties have seen compensation increases and which ones have not.

The good news, according to Carol Peckham over at Medscape is that most specialties have actually seen their compensation go up.

Based on Medscape’s 2015 Physician Compensation Report, only rheumatologists and urologists saw a decrease in income, 4 percent and 1 percent respectively. Ophthalmologists saw a zero percent increase/decrease.

Obviously, that’s not good for any of these specialties, and if you happen to be a urologist, a rheumatologist, or an ophthalmologist looking for a new position, then the “other” factors we speak of frequently become even more vital in your job search (i.e., geography, competition, need, etc.). Also, remember that these are averages. You may very well find a job that is unaffected by these decreases or in the case of ophthalmology, income stagnation.

For many specialties, the increases can be broken down into fast-food combo sizes: small, medium, and large.

The small increases were seen by nephrologists and intensivists, both seeing a 1 percent increase. Orthopedists and OB/GYNs saw a 2 percent increase, while radiologists saw a 3 percent increase. Oncologists, pediatricians, and internists all had their annual compensation go up by 4 percent, while neurologists’ compensation went up by 5 percent and anethesiologists by 6.

Several specialties saw medium increases, the base of which we’ll set at 7 percent. Seeing this level of increase were gastroenterologists, endocriniologists, cardiologists, and general surgeons.

On the large end of the scale, psychiatrists and mental-health specialists, dermatologists, plastic surgeons, and family-medicine physicians all saw an average increase of 10 percent. At 12 percent were pathologists and EMPs, while pulmonologists saw a 15 percent increase.

The super-sized increase, if you will, goes to infectious-disease specialists, whose compensation jumped by 22 percent in 2014.

Taking a broader perspective on compensation, the report also broke the stats down by geographic region. Currently, the highest-paid physicians are in the Northwest states, which include Alaska, at $281,000. Coming in second are the South Central states at $271,000, with the North Central states close on their heels at $270,000.

The Southeastern states have an average compensation of $269,000, while the Great Lakes states are $268,000.

Southwestern states renumerate physicians with an average salary of $263,000, while California and Hawaii physicians earn $262,000 annually.

The lowest-ranking states are found in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions, with $254,000 and $253,000 being the average annual compensation respectively.

As physicians who are looking for jobs, do these statistics influence your search at all?

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