With physician demand at a fever pitch, medical practices are offering more competitive salaries and attractive benefits to recruit new doctors. In terms of compensation alone, primary care physicians took in a median of $180,000 in first-year guaranteed compensation in 2012, up from $175,000 in 2011, according to the Medical Group Management Association's Physician Placement Starting Salary Survey: 2013 Report Based on 2012 Data.
In addition, practices are also looking to draw physicians with perks such as first-year, post-residency or post-fellowship signing bonuses, paid relocation expenses, loan forgiveness, paid vacations and continuing medical education, according to MGMA.
Items such as debt-repayment assistance are particularly important in primary care, where the shortage is the most acute and educational debt is a critical concern for candidates. Meanwhile, increased paid vacation time addresses new physicians' growing demand for work-life balance.
"A number of factors influence the environment for recruiting physicians, and it continues to be highly competitive," said Kenneth T. Hertz, FACMPE, MGMA Health Care Consulting Group, in an announcement.
When recruiting physicians and especially physician leaders, keep in mind that money is not everything. As FierceHealthcare reported last week, offering physicians strong professional support and career-development resources help them feel they're signing on with an organization in which they can succeed.