Physicians received an average 2.9% increase in compensation in 2016

Specialties that saw the largest increases in compensation in 2016 were ophthalmology surgery, cardiac/thoracic surgery, hematology and medical oncology, allergy/immunology and pulmonary disease. (Photo by jansucko/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images)

2016 was a good year for doctors’ compensation, according to a new report.

Physicians saw an average increase in compensation of 2.9% in 2016, according to an announcement of the report from the AMGA. That was similar to a 3.1% increase in 2015. The 2017 Medical Group Compensation and Productivity Survey, which must be purchased, found that 77% of physician specialties experienced increases in compensation.

The survey results found the following:

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  • Primary care doctors saw an increase of 3.2%, similar to the increase of 3.6% in 2015.
  • Other medical specialties saw an average increase of 2.8%, comparable to 3.0% in 2015.
  • Surgical specialties saw an average increase of 2.0%, down from a 3.6% increase in 2015.

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Who did the best in 2016? Specialties that saw the largest increases in compensation in 2016 were ophthalmology surgery (7.7%), cardiac/thoracic surgery (7.0%), hematology and medical oncology (6.7%), allergy/immunology (5.9%) and pulmonary disease (5.6%), according to the announcement.

The survey was based on data from 269 medical groups representing more than 102,000 providers and is representative of large multispecialty medical groups and integrated health systems, with an average of 380 providers per participant group.

“Market salary data has become a driving determinant in physician base salary, and its importance has steadily increased over other factors,” said Ryan A. O’Connor, AGMA’s interim president and CEO. “The findings in this survey are critical to medical group leaders as they make decisions impacting their organization’s financial performance.”

AMGA infographic2

The survey also found the weighted average change in median relative value units, a measure of a physician’s productively, increased 1.54%.

But the group worried about the future. “We are seeing signs of a perfect storm gathering as costs continue to rise, productivity is flat and collections are flat, with 51% of specialties this year reporting a decrease in median net collections,” Tom Dobosenski, president of the group’s consulting arm, said in the announcement.

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