Average Increase in Physician Compensation 2.9% in 2016

Overall, 77 percent of physician specialties experienced increases in compensation

stethoscope with a dollar sign

MONDAY, July 24, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The AMGA 2017 Medical Group Compensation and Productivity Survey reports that 77 percent of physician specialties experienced increases in compensation in 2016, with an overall weighted average increase of 2.9 percent.

According to the report, primary care specialists saw an increase of 3.2 percent, similar to the 3.6 percent increase in 2015, while other medical specialties saw an average increase of 2.8 percent, comparable to the 3.0 percent increase in 2015. For surgical specialties, the average increase was 2.0 percent, down from 3.6 percent in 2015.

Based on data from 269 medical groups, representing more than 102,000 providers, the largest increases in 2016 were seen in ophthalmology surgery (7.7 percent), cardiac/thoracic surgery (7.0 percent), hematology and medical oncology (6.7 percent), allergy/immunology (5.9 percent), and pulmonary disease (5.6 percent). The biggest change was seen in emergency medicine, which had a 2.0 percent decrease in compensation in 2016, compared with a 9.6 percent increase in 2015.

"With 61 percent of groups responding that some of their physicians' compensation was based on the achievement of value-based measures, the move to value-based incentives is happening, albeit at a slower pace than anticipated," Tom Dobosenski, president of AMGA Consulting, said in a statement. "However, value-based incentives do not lessen the economic pressures on medical groups, as they do not necessarily mean reductions in compensation."

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