U.S. physician salaries are heading back up after declines seen during the earlier years of the global COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Medscape Physician Compensation Report 2022.
In some cases, this is just compensation for stagnation or declines from 2020. That’s when many health practices were closed, elective surgeries were canceled, and patients were staying home.
The 2021 highest earners are virtually a repeat of the year 2017, according to Medscape.
Topping the list are:
Otolaryngology was the specialty showing the greatest increase in income, up 13 percent from the previous year.
Critical care salaries rose least, up just 1 percent, in 2021, according to the most recent Medscape report.
That compares with average critical care salary growth from $355,000 in 2019 to $366,000 in 2020, according to the Medscape Intensivist Compensation Report 2021.
The current 2022 report included more than 13,000 respondents across more than 29 specialties.
All specialties have experienced an increase in income, though individual doctors may have seen a decrease, according to the 2022 Medscape report.
Physician compensation has increased by 29 percent overall since 2015, according to Medscape. Primary care physicians saw a 33 percent increase and specialists a 30 percent increase.
The gender gap in specialist salaries has declined in recent years, and is currently 31 percent, based on this latest report.