Medscape Physician Compensation Report Shows Salaries Stable, Despite Pandemic



Telemedicine, recovery programs and post-lockdown demand have helped practices rebound

NEW YORK, April 16, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Defying expectations, physician salaries held steady in 2020, a combination of shifting to telehealth, leveraging government programs and downsizing to minimize the impact of office closures and restrictions on elective procedures during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the 2021 findings Medscape Physician Compensation Report: Recovery Begins.


Based on responses from more than 18,000 American physicians from 29 specialties, the survey – conducted October 6, 2020 at February 11, 2021 – found that the average salaries of primary care physicians remained at $ 242,000 of $ 243,000 Last year. Likewise, the average salaries of specialists have fallen. $ 2,000 at $ 344,000.

About 44% of physicians reported a reduction in patient volume and almost one in four saw a decrease in the number of hours. However, the combination of government pandemic relief programs, staff cuts, capitation plans that continued to pay doctors, and reimbursement for telemedicine visits mitigated the impact. About 45% of doctors said they had no loss of income, but 13% said there were months when they had no income.

Almost one in four physicians reduced their working hours during the pandemic, but 58% of primary care physicians and 65% of specialists said income and the average number of hours worked per week were now at low levels. pre-pandemic levels.

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Plastic surgeons were the highest paying doctors this year ($ 526,000), experiencing a peak of 10% compared to the previous year. The increase may have been driven by greater demand for cosmetic procedures, as people spent more time looking at their faces in virtual meetings. Orthopedists and cardiologists followed, with compensation at $ 511,000 and $ 459,000 respectively.

The lowest paying physicians were those in public health and preventive medicine ($ 237,000)family medicine ($ 236,000)and pediatrics ($ 221,000). The gender pay gap persisted, with female primary care physicians earning 25% less than their male colleagues and female specialists earning 33% less than men.

Doctors in Alabama were the highest earners in the United States ($ 348,000), followed by those of Kentucky ($ 340,000), and Oklahoma ($ 338,000). The lowest paid are in Massachusetts ($ 300,000), new York ($ 298,000) and Minnesota ($ 296,000).

The number of physicians in a region, the percentage of insured patients and the overall concentration of specialists play a role in regional compensation differences.

The Medscape Report is the most comprehensive and widely used physician salary survey in the U.S. It measures compensation, hours worked, time spent with patients, and what they find most rewarding – and challenging. – in their work.

“Physicians have had a difficult year on many fronts, including resisting the volatile financial impact of lockdowns,” said Leslie Kane, MA, senior director, Medscape Business of Medicine. “Our report shows that many were able to use telemedicine and focus on tactics that would protect their practices. COVID has had a terrible emotional impact on doctors and healthcare workers, and many still struggle financially, but our results have shown doctors will innovate and change quickly to meet the needs of patients going through extremely difficult times. . “

Medscape Survey Methods:
The Medscape 2021 Physician Compensation Survey was completed by 17,903 physicians representing 29 specialty areas, including Medscape members and non-members. Respondents were invited to complete the online survey. The survey’s margin of error was +/- 0.85% with a confidence level of 95%.

Aabout Medscape
Medscape is the premier source for clinical news, health information, and point-of-care tools for healthcare professionals. Medscape provides the most robust and integrated medical information and educational tools for specialists, primary care physicians and other healthcare professionals. Medscape Education ( is the premier destination for continuing professional development, comprised of over 30 specialty destinations offering thousands of free CME and CE courses and other educational programs for physicians, nurses and other professionals of health. Medscape is a subsidiary of WebMD Health Corp.

About WebMD Health Corp.
WebMD Health Corp., an Internet-branded company, is the premier provider of health information services, serving patients, physicians, healthcare professionals, employers, and health plans through portals public and private online, mobile platforms and health-focused publications. The WebMD Health Network includes WebMD Health, Medscape, Jobson Healthcare Information, prIME Oncology, MediQuality, Frontline, Vitals Consumer Services, Aptus Health, MedicineNet, eMedicineHealth, RxList, OnHealth, Medscape Education, and other owned WebMD sites. WebMD®, Medscape®, CME Circle®, Medpulse®, eMedicine®, MedicineNet®,® and RxList® are among the registered trademarks of WebMD Health Corp. or its subsidiaries.

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SOURCE Medscape


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