Average Doctor Salary in the USA (2023)

Average Doctor Salary in the USA (2023)

Ever wondered how much a doctor in the US makes? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 13 out of the top 20 highest salaried occupations in the USA are in the healthcare sector. Specific US doctors' salaries are not publicly available like UK doctor salaries are. However, the average doctor's salary in the USA is $294,000 per year. The average annual salary of US doctors in 2023 is expected to be higher globally.

Doctors in the USA have great earning potential, but various factors affect their compensation. According to a new Medscape survey, experienced physicians or medical doctors in the US are paid the most and are the most satisfied with their pay. They also have the highest net worth in the country. This article provides a complete guide on doctors' annual salaries in America.

Table of Contents

An Overview of Doctor Salaries in the USA

The average salary of US doctors is on the rise, with an average difference between the highest and lowest-paid salaries of 81,000 USD. Factors such as specialisation, gender, geography, etc., affect the salary a doctor earns. Medscape's Physician Compensation Report provides information on average doctor's salaries by speciality and state to help make informed decisions.

Doctors' salaries vary significantly by medical speciality. Higher paying specialties include surgery, orthopedics and gastroenterology, while lower paying specialties are typically primary care or pediatrics. In addition, doctors' salaries will depend upon their place of practice, with private practice physicians typically receiving higher pay than those working at hospitals or non-profit organizations.

Location is also a factor when it comes to determining physician salaries in the US. Coastal states such as California and New York tend to pay higher salaries than Midwestern states and rural communities due to the additional cost of living expenses in those areas.

Average Salary of a Medical Professional in the US

The average salary of US doctors in 2022 is USD 183,429, which is equivalent to around 1.4 Crore Rupees. The lowest national annual average wage was USD 126,470, and the highest was USD 208,000. Salaries include base salaries and transport and housing facility benefits.

Salary of US Doctors by Years of Experience

When looking at the salaries of doctors in the US, it’s important to understand that years of experience is a major factor. Generally, speaking, more experienced physicians make more money each year than their less-experienced counterparts.

In fact, it’s not uncommon for doctors that have been practicing for over 10 years to earn close to double the salary of physicians that are just starting out. This salary disparity can be attributed to several factors, such as gaining better job opportunities through connections and a greater ability to diagnose and treat illnesses due to experience in the field.

According to Indeed data, the following are indicative of salaries based on years of experience: 

Year of experience Salary per year
Less than 1 year $240,356
1 to 2 years $148,348
3 to 5 years Data not available
6 to 9 years $238,673
More than 10 years $290,063

US Doctor Salary by Specialty Area

doctor-salary-by-specialty-area-bar-graph

When it comes to physician annual salaries, one of the biggest factors at play is the specialty area in which a doctor practices. Generally speaking, doctors in higher demand specialties will tend to make more money than those who practice in less sought-after areas.

Ultimately this means that although specialty area plays a role when determining what doctors can earn, there are other variables to take into consideration that determine physician salary potential.

Speciality  Salary per year
Neurosurgery $616,000
Plastic surgery $471,000
Dermatology $419,000
Cardiology $430,000
Opthalmalogy $482,000
Orthopedics $482,000
Oncology $366,000
Otolaryngology $469,000
Counselling psychology $224,000
Infectious Diseases $239,000
Diabetes and Endocrinology $236,000
Internal medicine $234,000
Family medicine $231,000
Pediatrics $225,000
Public Health and Preventive Medicine $209,000
Pediatric Infectology  $185,000

Primary care physicians are the backbone of the American healthcare system, earning on average a salary of over $260,000 in 2021. However, that number is continuously growing as the demand for medical services increases and salaries rise accordingly.

Remarkably, medicine/pediatrics saw a 9% increase from $232,000 to $330,200 compared to 2020 data. Pediatric hematology/oncology grew by 7%, while pediatric cardiology grew even more at 7%. Additionally, obstetricians/gynecologists saw gains of 6%.

The report points to a bright future for all branches of medicine in the United States; indicating promising salary growth and continued opportunity for those willing to follow a career in this noble field. Doctors are starting to understand how much their hard work is worth and how essential it is for our country’s well-being.

State-by-State US Doctor Salaries

From Kentucky to Florida, physicians in the USA can make sizable sums. As one of the most well-remunerated professions, doctor salaries are significantly higher than average wages or salaries.

Accounting for states with salary distributions that tend to be higher or lower than the national average, salaries range from $346,000 in Florida to $364,000 in Tennessee and Kentucky. States like Alabama, Missouri, and Oregon hit over $350K in physician annual salaries; North Carolina and Indiana both exceed $348K.

Here are the states ranked by income for physicians:

State Income
Kentucky

$364,000

Tennessee

$364,000

Alabama

$358,000

Missouri

$357,000

Oregon

$352,000

Indiana

$350,000

North Carolina

$348,000

Connecticut

$346,000

Texas

$346,000

Florida

$346,000

Source: kaptest.com

Top Earning Metro Areas/Cities for Physicians

For those seeking the highest paying rate, metropolitan areas are the way to go. The top 25 metro areas in the US, such as Milwaukee, New Orleans and Riverside, Calif boast higher-than-average salaries ranging from $395,363 to $333,604.

In each of these cities, doctors will find their services are prestigious and well-paid for; however, when looking into monetary matters there're more considerations than simple income numbers. One should consider the cost of living expenses within a particular city or state which may vary widely from region to region.

Metro Area/City Income
Milwaukee

$395,363

New Orleans

$384,651
Riverside, Calif $371,296
Minneapolis $369,889
Charlotte, N.C $368,205
Dallas $362,472
Atlanta $362,267
Los Angeles $356,390
Cincinnati $354,129
Hartford, Conn $352,129
Salt Lake City $351,300
Bridgeport, Conn $348,089
Orlando, Fla $347,711
San Diego $347,154
Phoenix $347,065
Seattle $346,721
Louisville, Ky $346,206
Sacramento, Calif $345,168
Indianapolis $339,411
Jacksonville, Fla $338,790
San Francisco $338,407
Nashville, Tenn $337,914
Kansas City, Mo $336,568
Miami $336,336
New York City $333,604

Source: Doximity 2019 Physician Compensation Report

Gender Gap in Average Salary of US Doctors

Research indicates that male physicians make a significantly higher salary than female physicians on average, but the gender wage gap is shrinking. The American Medical Association’s principle for equal pay is showing some promising developments in closing this gap- with women overcoming the disparity at a rate of 2% per year compared to men who see minimal changes in salary.

Salary of US Doctors: Self-Employed vs Full-time Doctors

Earnings for US doctors vary widely depending on whether they are self-employed or employed in a full-time role. In 2020, the average annual salary for a self-employed doctor was USD 352,000 while employed Physicians earned an average of USD 300,000 yearly. These figures have grown significantly since 2017 when the comparable figures were USD 300,000 and USD 246,000 respectively.

Self-employment offers greater financial upside to doctors – with a potential of up to 50% increased earnings compared to their peers in permanent positions. However, with higher remuneration comes other considerations such as increasing administrative expenses as well as taxation factors that may restrict overall income potential.

Physicians in locum tenens job benefit from increased wages yet can struggle when it comes to spending more time away from family and home ties which many consider an important part of work-life balance. For busy professionals seeking alternative working arrangements with more flexibility and control over income/schedule combination but less (or very minimal) responsibility towards medical facility management costs; locums might provide the perfect blend of job satisfaction and financial reward.

Salary of US Doctors: US vs Globally

High-earning doctors in the US enjoy significantly greater salaries and net worth than practitioners in seven other countries, according to the Medscape report. US physicians' earnings topped all other countries studied, with male doctors making nearly 75% more than their female counterparts.

On average, US doctors yielded more than their international peers in the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Brazil, and Mexico. While the comparison adjusted each wage to USD for standardisation purposes, it did not consider the cost of living or benefits given in different countries.

Interestingly, the disparity among genders is just as large on an international playing field - females received lower compensation everywhere outside of the USA. The most pronounced gap was observed in Spain where female doctors got compensated half as much as males.

Average Surgeon Salary

In the US, a surgeon's average annual compensation is a staggering $420,169. This compensation is taking into account a wide variety of factors such as education, certifications, additional skills, and years of experience.

Naturally, salaries can vary significantly in either direction depending on a number of different elements. Specialty certification and additional experience are two especially influential factors that can both increase or decrease a doctor's salary substantially.

Source: salary.com

Ayurveda Doctor or Practitioner Salary in USA

The demand for allied Ayurvedic healthcare visits is surging as more Americans seek alternative therapies such as meditation therapy, herbal remedies and lifestyle advice. This high demand promises potentially lucrative career opportunities for doctors trained in traditional Ayurveda Medicine who are licensed to practice in the US.

Earnings within the holistic wellness sector vary depending on the practitioner’s experience, credentials, location of practice and specialty. For physicians trained in Ayurveda Medicine, salaries in the United States can be expected to range from $89,000 to $100,000 for more experienced practitioners in 2021. The top 10% of earners may earn up to $145,000 per annum with bonuses and commissions often boosting total income.

Source: saiayurvedic.com

Benefits & Bonuses Enjoyed by US Physicians

Anchoring financial security for the future, US physicians have access to multiple benefits. From 401(k)s offering pre-tax contributions with employer matching to AD&D insurance providing protection for families in case of accidental death or disability, these benefits give peace of mind.

Plus, savings options don't stop there. 403(b) plans are offered by public medical schools and non-profits, while 457(b) plans are available from state and local government institutions and some non-profits.

These retirement savings vehicles are designed to help doctors accumulate wealth throughout their career and ensure they're prepared financially when it's time to retire. With professional obligations fulfilled, the physician community can gain the stability of long-term planning without the worry of catastrophic risk.

All in all, US physicians enjoy a wealth of options for ensuring their financial well-being well into their later years – beyond their active practice years – which gives them greater flexibility in controlling their futures.

Conclusion

Physicians in the United States earn a median annual salary of $294,000, which rises further with board certification and further qualifications. Experienced physicians can command higher incomes and those working in specialty fields or as surgeons make even more. It is important to consider quality of life when evaluating job satisfaction and potential income, as hours might double without a corresponding increase in pay. Healthcare professionals should balance their time valued against potential earnings before making an informed decision about their career.

FAQs

What is the average physician salary in the U.S. for 2023?

The average salary of a doctor in the United States is $294,000 per year.

How much do doctors make per hour in the USA?

In the United States, the average hourly wage for a doctor is roughly $89. However, the hourly wage can range from $96 for family physicians to $168 for emergency medicine specialists. Anesthesiologists make the most per hour, with an average of $150.25.

Is Indian MBBS valid in USA?

Yes, Indian MBBS degree is valid in USA provided the practitioner clears the United States Medical Licence Examination (USMLE). After successfully completing the MBBS program in India, the practitioner must complete a residency program in the USA and obtain a state license. 

Do doctors become millionaire?

Yes, many doctors are able to become millionaires. Surveys of physicians consistently demonstrate that approximately 56% are millionaires.

Which country pays doctors the most?

According to factual data, the country that pays doctors the most is the United States, with an average yearly salary for a specialist of $329,000.

What is the lowest paid doctor?

According to the Medscape Physician Compensation Report, the lowest-paid doctor is a pediatric infectologist, who earns an average of $185,000 per year. This is significantly lower than the highest-paid specialties such as radiologists and orthopedic surgeons. 

Which doctor is highest paid in USA?

Doctors specializing in orthopedics are the highest paid in USA according to recent surveys. Neurosurgery and Plastic surgery specialists also get well-paid in the US. They get a salary of more than $500,000 a year on average.

What is the starting salary of doctors in USA?

An entry-level doctor can get a salary starting from around $180,000 to $235,000 a year. On average, the starting salary of doctors in USA is nearly $210,000.

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