If you’ve ever–or let’s face it, often–wondered how your salary stacks up to what other doctors are earning, you’re not alone. Compensation-related questions are among the most common our Nomad Navigators receive.
Particularly when it comes to the medical field where salaries vary greatly by specialty, we feel strongly that that kind of information should be clear and transparent. In fact, we’re proud to say we’re the first physician job search site to show your pay upfront.
This in mind, we thought it might be helpful to share a breakdown of the average income for both permanent and locum tenens jobs by speciality. A few things to know out of the gate:
However, doctor salaries vary based on location and specialty. For instance, neurosurgeons make the most per year on average at $616K, while a Pediatric Infectious Disease doctor makes $185K. But one thing is for sure – full-time locum tenens medical professionals can expect to make 30-50% more than a permanent position.
In this article, we break down the average doctor salaries by specialty and compare that to an estimated locum tenens salary to show how much more you could be making through locum tenens work.
Doctor Salaries and Locum Tenens Salaries
Locum tenens medical professionals can expect to make between 30-50% more than a permanent position.
In the table below, we compare the national average annual salary by specialty and the estimated locum tenens salary a doctor could make.
|List of Doctor Specialties||National Average Salary¹||Locums Tenens Salary²|
|Colon & Rectal Surgery||$373,000||$484,900|
|Obstetrics & Gynecology||$335,000||$435,500|
|Physical Medicine / Rehab||$315,000||$409,500|
|Pediatric Emergency Medicine||$270,000||$351,000|
|Allergy & Immunology||$263,000||$341,900|
|Pediatric Hematology/ Oncology||$222,953||$289,839|
|Pediatric Infectious Disease||$185,892||$241,660|
1. Data from Doximity Report
2. Based on 30% average increase
Salary Trends from 2018 to 2019
While the mean salary for a doctor in the United States saw a +4.6% increase over the past year, not every specialty fared as well. Let’s take a look at who saw the biggest increases and decreases in the past year:
- Medicine/Pediatrics saw the biggest change with a +9% increase from $232,000/year to $330,200/year.
- Pediatric Hematology/Oncology saw a +7% increase from $208,524/year to $222,953/year.
- Pediatric Cardiology saw a +7% increase from $283,000/year to $303,000/year.
- Plastic Surgery saw the biggest change with a -8.5% decrease from $473,212/year to $433,000/year.
- Otolaryngology (ENT) saw a -7.6% decrease from $431,000/year to $398,000/year.
- Endocrinology saw a -7.5% decrease from $266,000/year to $246,000/year.
The specialties that saw the least amount of change from year to year (<1%) were:
- Pediatrics (+0.5%)
- Urology (0%)
- Emergency Medicine (0%)
- Rheumatology (0%)
- Radiology (-0.5%)
Working locum tenens allows doctors to work when and where they want while also getting paid a premium. Since locum tenens work is so flexible, many full-time doctors actually do locum tenens work on the side as supplemental income to their primary job.
If this chart inspired you to look for a locum tenens job, you can start your search here!
The Nomad Team
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2018 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
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