There’s a reason why there are nearly 750,000 physicians and surgeons found in the United States. We rely on these medical professionals every day to take care of us when we’re sick.
It’s well known that doctors earn a higher salary than the typical profession. But exactly what is the average doctor’s salary for 2022?
If you want to know the answer, you’re in the right place.
In this article, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about the average doctor’s salary. That way, you can decide whether or not it’s the right profession for you. Let’s get started!
The Average Doctor’s Salary for 2022
The median salary for a doctor in 2022 is around $180,000 per year. However, this figure can vary rapidly. Doctors in the top 90% of earners can make as much as $340,000 per year.
However, doctors in the bottom 10% make around $94,000 per year. The good news is that even the worst doctor’s pay is still decent money.
Still, when you factor in all the education and costs required to become a medical professional, these low-paying jobs might not seem worth it.
What Factors Influence Doctor Salaries?
The salary difference between $94,000 per year and $340,000 is pretty wide. So, what accounts for this doctor’s earnings discrepancy? Many factors can determine why one doctor makes more than another.
In this section, we’ll go over some of the main factors that can affect the price.
Procedure-oriented doctors make a lot more money than primary care physicians. They earn an average of 40% more. Since their practices require specific skills, there’s a higher demand for them.
The trade-off is that these high-paying positions require a much longer residency to get. The highest-paid specialties are cardiologists, plastic surgeons, orthopedic doctors, brain surgeons, and radiation oncologists.
- Geographic Location
National averages for doctor salaries can be a little misleading. That’s because geographic location plays a huge factor in how much you will be paid.
If you choose a state with a lot of doctors, like New York or California, you likely won’t earn that much. But, if you choose an area where there’s a shortage of your specialty or just primary care doctors in general, you can earn a lot more.
For example, the average doctor’s salary in California is $161,955. But, in Mississippi, where there’s a shortage, the average salary is $202,911.
So, if you’re willing to relocate to where you’re needed, you stand to make a lot more money.
- Department Rank
Hospitals and healthcare facilities typically reward those who stay with them for a long time. This can be seen by the fact that doctors with a higher rank earn much more than the standard primary care physician.
You may also make more if you’ve been at a hospital for over a decade. Management tends to reward loyalty with higher salaries.
External factors can also influence a doctor’s salary. One example is the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Many healthcare leaders reported that their organization’s compensation was affected by the pandemic.
These types of events place stress on certain parts of the healthcare industry, like hospitals and ICU areas. But it also reduces the necessity of others typically due to widespread economic reasons amongst patients.
Many patients may also stay away because of social distancing. While this trend is dying down, it’s important to note that it can easily happen again for one reason or another.
What Type of Education Do Doctors Need?
There’s a reason why most doctors are paid a lot of money. Doctors require a huge amount of education after high school. At a minimum, this comes to eleven years of continuous education.
So what would you do in these eleven years? First, you will need an undergraduate degree in chemistry, biology, physics, or a specific education course related to healthcare.
While earning your undergraduate degree, you will need healthcare experience. You can get this by volunteering at a hospital or medical clinic. Now, it’s time for medical school.
But before you can get in, you will first need to pass the standardized Medical College Admissions Test (or MCAT). After that, you will need four years of medical school at an accredited university.
Once you graduate from medical school, you will begin your residency program.
During this time, you will decide what medical specialty you want to focus on. Your residency will last between three and seven years depending on what specialty you decide on.
What Financial Challenges Do Doctors Face?
It takes a long time for a doctor’s income to increase. And before that happens, you will likely need to take on a lot of debt in student loans to afford education.
Once you become a doctor, you will need to use your finances to both prepare for retirement and protect against the unforeseen. Some vital areas to focus on include:
- Disability insurance for if you’re injured on the job
- Loan repayment strategies
- Life insurance to protect your family
- Retirement planning
- Tax planning to avoid unnecessary taxes associated with upper bracket earnings
Sadly, doctors are busy people. They often don’t have time to give these financial challenges the attention they deserve.
That’s why we always recommend investing in a trusted physician financial advisor. They can take the stress off your back by focusing on every part of your finances.
Enjoy Learning About Doctor Salaries? Keep Reading
We hope this article helped you answer the question “What is the average doctor’s salary in 2022?” As you can see, doctors have one of the highest salaries in the country.
But when you calculate the time and cost of schooling, it’s easy to see why this salary is so high.
If you found this article informative, then you’re going to love some of the other topics that we have. We have categories in everything from business products to personal finance, so keep reading our articles to learn more.