DATA FROM THE 2023 Today’s Hospitalist Compensation & Career Survey are in, and here’s what they show: Hospitalist compensation is still going up, but maybe not as quickly as hospitalists would like.
The big news is that total compensation for all hospitalists came in at a mean of $330,371. That’s about $15,000—or 4.6%—higher than we found in last year’s survey.
But because that number represents total compensation for all hospitalists—everyone from nonacademic adult hospitalists to pediatric hospitalists—it tells only part of the story.
Look at comp data for full-time hospitalists who treat adults, for example, and you’ll see that total mean comp was $339,438. That represents a gain of less than $2,000—or 0.6%—over last year’s number. For full-time pediatric hospitalists, total mean comp in this survey came in at $236,393, a gain of $13,447 (6%) over last year’s average.
There’s usually a significant difference between academic and nonacademic hospitalists, and this year was no different. Mean compensation for academic hospitalists this year was $295,326. That’s a bump of $11,429, or 4.0%, over the previous year.
For nonacademic hospitalists, by comparison, mean comp was $341,471—an increase of only $2,008, or about one half of 1%.
This year’s results reveal a few other trends. First, because so many of the 500-plus hospitalists who responded to our survey were adult hospitalists working in nonacademic settings, that group’s pay has an outsized impact on our numbers. That explains, for example, why the compensation numbers for all adult hospitalists are fairly close to the numbers for nonacademic hospitalists.
Second, in the 15 years Today’s Hospitalist has been surveying hospitalists, we’ve seen these patterns before. Compensation jumps by a healthy percent one year then remains relatively flat the next year. The cycle repeats itself.
Last year’s survey, for instance, found that over a three-year period (from 2018 through 2021), hospitalist pay rose 17%. Those data were unusual because they covered such a long period. (We paused our survey during the pandemic.) Still, the data indicate a close to 6% comp increase for each of the three years covered.
When we drill down into this year’s data, some big differences in pay jump out.
Look at total compensation by the type of group that hospitalists work in, for example, and you’ll see that pay for hospitalists in two groups—multispecialty/primary care groups and universities/medical schools—was up about 7%. Pay for hospitalists working for local hospitals and local hospitalist groups was down about 2%.
Pay also varied by geography, with hospitalists in the Southwest reporting a drop in pay of about 8%. Meanwhile, hospitalists in the Pacific told us they had a gain of about the same amount.
Other longstanding trends in hospitalist pay have held up. Hospitalists who work more shifts and see more patients still report higher compensation, and there’s a positive correlation between satisfaction and overall compensation.
And not surprisingly, the gender gap between compensation for male and female hospitalists still survives.
We’ll provide more details about compensation by different types of groups and regions of the country in future stories. Stay tuned for more coverage on the 2023 Today’s Hospitalist Compensation & Career Survey.