Radiologists among top 10 highest paid medical specialists in 2022

2020 02 20 18 12 3118 Money Bills 400

The average annual salary for radiologists in 2022 was $503,564, putting them among the top 10 medical specialists in the U.S. for compensation, according to Doximity's sixth annual Physician Compensation Report.

The report found that, while the average salary was up for radiologists in 2022, from $495,451 in 2021, average pay for all doctors did not increase in 2022 but showed a slight decline of 2.4%.

"It is clear physician salaries did not keep pace with the high rate of inflation in 2022, which reached a 40-year high of 9.1% in June, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI)," the authors wrote. "As a result, many doctors experienced a decline in real income, as inflation ran rampant."

The Doximity report included data from more than 31,000 self-reported physician compensation surveys completed between January and December 2022, with information from more than 190,000 compensation surveys since 2017. Each survey was completed by full-time, U.S. physicians who practice at least 40 hours per week.

Radiology jumped two spots into the top 10 over 2022, with gastroenterology and otolaryngology dropping out of the top tier. Neurosurgeons again topped the list at an average annual salary of $788,313, up from $773,201 in 2021, according to the report.

Medical specialties with highest average annual compensation in 2022
Neurosurgery $788,313
Thoracic Surgery $706,775
Orthopedic Surgery $624,043
Plastic Surgery $571,373
Vascular Surgery $557,632
Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery $556,642
Radiation Oncology $547,026
Cardiology $544,201
Urology $505,745
Radiology $503,564

In terms of compensation growth by specialty, emergency medicine stood out with the highest increase in compensation in 2022, with a growth rate of 6.2% and an average annual salary of $385,554. This was "a likely result of the continued demand for emergency health care services," the authors wrote.

Conversely, the bottom five specialties with the lowest average annual compensation tended to be in pediatric and primary care, with pediatric endocrinology landing in the lowest spot with an average salary of $218,266.

The report also showed that the gender pay gap among physicians continues to be significant, with male doctors earning nearly $110,000 more than their female counterparts. This represents a 26% gender pay gap in 2022, compared with 28% in 2021.

However, nuclear medicine stood out in this regard, according to the authors. All specialties had gender pay gaps of more than 10%, with the exceptions of pediatric cardiology and nuclear medicine, which had a gap of 3% -- the smallest gap among all specialties in 2022, according to the findings.

Pay gaps may contribute to an even higher burnout rate among women physicians, with nearly 92% of women physicians surveyed reporting overwork, compared with 83% of men, the authors found.

"While there appears to be slight movement in the right direction, physician pay parity continues to be a critical area in need of improvement," they concluded.

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