Maryland physician compensation below national average, women earn even less: 6 Merritt Hawkins finds

A new survey conducted by Merritt Hawkins on behalf of MedChi, The Maryland State Medical Society, found physicians in Maryland make less than other physicians nationally, with female physicians earning significantly less than their male counterparts.

Merritt Hawkins surveyed 508 Maryland physicians, and tracked compensation, benefits and practice metrics, comparing them to physicians nationally.

Here are the key findings:

1. Even when compared on a specialty-by-specialty basis, male physicians made more than female physicians. Male family medicine physicians earned $243,000, while female family physicians made $164,000 — a difference of 48 percent.

2. Male physicians working 41 hours a week still earned over 37 percent more than women working the same or more hours a week.

3. Average annual compensation for male physicians was $335,000, and for female physicians it was $224,000, which is almost 50 percent less, the survey said.

4. Jeremy Robinson, regional vice president of Merritt Hawkins, said the reason for the differences in salaries for male and female physicians is difficult to determine.

"There is little difference in the starting salaries of male and female physicians in the contracts
we see," Mr. Robinson said. "But clearly, physician gender income disparities are real."

5. Merritt Hawkins also found both male and female physicians in Maryland make less than physicians nationally. Out of 15 specialties included in the survey, 14 earned less in total compensation.

6. Mr. Robinson said Maryland physicians may be paid less starting out than those in other states and continue to make less after practicing for several years. He also noted the large number of physicians per capita in Maryland, the presence of managed care and low reimbursement rates as additional reasons for the difference in salary.

More articles on benchmarking:
Where in the U.S. do physicians make the most money? — 9 survey findings
Outpatient expenditure increases amid decline in hospital inpatient spending — 6 statistics
How much does money influence specialty choice? — 9 statistics

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