The COVID-19 pandemic has touched every facet of American life, but has especially impacted the nation’s healthcare system. Many hospitals and private medical practices have seen steep declines in billings, as the pandemic has resulted in an enormous wave of delayed or canceled elective medical procedures and treatments.
Our annual Physician Compensation Report is part of a continuing project here at Doximity and draws on a repository of data spanning six years and includes survey responses from over 135,000 licensed U.S. doctors.
Compensation by MSA
Compensation for U.S. doctors grew 1.5% on average between 2019 and 2020. Medical practices of all sizes have been negatively impacted by the pandemic. It’s been widely reported since March, 2020 that hospitals and private medical practices have seen steep declines in revenue due to delayed or canceled elective medical procedures and treatments.
Metro areas with the HIGHEST compensation for physicians 2020
Metro areas with the LOWEST compensation for physicians 2020
Highest Compensation Growth by MSAs
Medical specialties that require more advanced training and longer medical residencies, such as surgeons, show significantly higher annual salaries when compared to the national average compensation of $383,340 in 2020.
The specialties with the HIGHEST and LOWEST average annual compensation.
Specialty Compensation Growth
While compensation plateaued in 2020, some medical specialties did experience gains. Doctors specializing in vascular surgery, geriatrics, and emergency medicine are seeing some of the largest increases, growing compensation by nearly 5% this year. It’s possible the pandemic has generated more demand in these areas, impacting pay for specialists who treat high-risk patients such as those with severe respiratory complications, those 65 years and older, and patients presenting at the emergency room.
The top-10 specialties with the largest increase in average annual compensation:
|Specialty||2019 Avg. Comp.||2020 Avg. Comp.||% Increase|
The Gender Wage Gap
This year’s data found that the wage gap between male and female physicians was 28%, with male doctors earning over $116,000 more annually than their female counterparts.
Metro areas where female physicians were paid the HIGHEST average annual salary:
- Milwaukee, WI — $363,717
- Minneapolis, MN — $354,160
- Jacksonville, FL — $350,418
- Birmingham, AL — $334,327
- Cincinnati, OH — $334,208
- Phoenix, AZ — $325,834
- St. Louis, MO — $324,657
- Atlanta, GA — $323,785
- Dallas, TX — $321,698
- Nashville, TN — $318,890
Metro areas where female physicians were paid the LOWEST average annual salary:
- Oklahoma City, OK — $238,797
- Hartford, CT — $239,897
- Memphis, TN — $246,531
- Virginia Beach, VA — $256,678
- Providence, RI — $262,595
- Baltimore, MD — $263,611
- Washington DC — $270,209
- Pittsburgh, PA — $273,195
- Tampa, FL — $274,240
- Detroit, MI — $275,980
The Gender Wage Gap in Medical Specialties
When examining the gender wage gap by specialty, the data showed there are no medical specialties in which women earned the same or more than men in 2020.
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