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Statistics From Our Salary and Compensation Data for Physicians

We are big believers that transparency about physician salary and compensation data is critical to empowering doctors to negotiate the best contracts possible. Unfortunately, it can be difficult or expensive to access databases that the hospitals are using as a basis to determine compensation. Because we believe this information plays a critical role in physician employment contract negotiations, we sought to create a database with concrete data points that showed not just salaries and RVU data, but many other factors of the physician compensation package as well, including benefits, PTO, bonus structures, call schedules, signing, location, workload, and relocation bonuses, and more, in hopes that physicians would have the data they needed to make apples to apples comparisons with their job offers.  While exploring our salary and compensation database for doctors will give you an actual apple to apples comparison based on your location, practice setting, benefits package, and specialty, we pooled some interesting aggregate trends we found while compiling our database to help our physician members know what to look for when negotiating a new job.

Learn more about our salary and compensation data for doctors, including how to access our databases and contribute. Data is unidentifiable and anonymous when contributing and free to access. Please note that to access the data as well as contribute to it, you will need to be a member of our Physicians Side Gigs Facebook group, which is free to join but only open to physicians.

Quick stats on physician salary and compensation data

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What practice environment do doctors contributing to our physician salary and compensation data work in?

Around 40% of our physician members reported that they are hospital employees. Around 25% work for a group private practice and 15% are in academics. The remainder work in environments such as:

  • Government-run systems (5%)

  • Solo private practice (2%)

  • FQHC (1%)

How long do doctors stay in their current positions?

We asked our members how long they have been employed at their current position. An overwhelming majority (over 70%) have been at their current job for 5 years or less. While this may in part be because the majority of the physicians in our communities are in their first two decades of practice, a time when physicians tend to switch jobs, it is also a sign of the times.

The fact is that physician burnout and changing healthcare landscapes are contributing to more and more physicians seeking jobs. We’ve seen that in posts on our online physician communities, as well as the increasing use of our physician job board and physician wellness resources

This is also the reason we feel so strongly about having well negotiated contracts that have had a physician contract review attorney provide feedback and insight. In an ideal situation, you can craft a physician contract agreement that aligns with your goals and avoids some of the most common red flags in physician contracts, such that you can focus on (and hopefully enjoy) doing your actual job instead of employment issues. A well crafted contract can save physicians from many of the frustrations and hurdles they have in their day to day, such as call and patient volume expectations (both of which we cover below).

While none of us like to start a new position with the end in mind, the stats show that job transitions are common in the current healthcare landscape, so having a well thought out exit strategy can bring peace of mind if/when the time comes to explore different opportunities. It is especially important to have carefully crafted termination clauses with a reasonable (or no) noncompete clause and good malpractice and tail insurance coverage

What type of retirement accounts do physicians have?

In our original salary and compensation database from over 5 years ago, close to 25% of our physician members reported that there was a pension available at their employer. In our most recent survey for the database, that number dropped to under 15%. These are clearly becoming less and less common.

While a pension can be a great way to save for retirement, saving outside of a pension can often offer better average rates of return. Pensions are often highly regulated to protect your contributions and allow for long-term stability for every party involved. Stability lowers the risk of your pension balance fluctuating with market volatility, but it prevents you from capitalizing more in compound growth in years when the market does well too.

If you don’t already, consider investing in other tax-advantaged retirement plans. When interviewing for a new position, see if they offer an employer sponsored plan such as a 401k. If they have one, check what match they have, as this can be guaranteed free money on top of your base salary.

60% of our members reported the availability of a 401k at work. 40% reported access to a 403b, which is a similar type of employer sponsored plan. 25% have access to a 457 plan.

Learn more

How common are physician non-competes?

60% of our physician members reported that they had a non-compete as part of their employment.

While you might not be able to negotiate eliminating a non-compete clause from your physician employment agreement, doctors can certainly negotiate restrictions and limitations to what is included in a non-compete if required to have one.

Is malpractice tail coverage standard for physicians?

Over 83% of our physician members reported that their job provides malpractice tail coverage. Given how expensive tail coverage can be if you need to purchase a policy yourself after leaving a position, this coverage can add value to your overall compensation package, even though it isn’t paid directly to you.

Always try to negotiate malpractice coverage and tail insurance into your contract agreement.

Learn more about malpractice insurance and tail coverage, including where to get coverage if you don’t have it.

What does a typical work week look like for doctors?

Day-to-day responsibilities and expectations can vary significantly based on both specialty and practice environment, which is why we recommend exploring the physician salary and compensation data in detail to find comparable data points for your particular specialty. 

When looking at the overall reported information from our physician members, we can see an overview of what a typical work week looks like.

How many hours a week do doctors work?

Over 50% of our physicians reported they worked over 40 hours a week, with 19% saying they worked 41-45 hours a week, 13.9% saying they worked 46-50 hours a week, 11.1% saying they worked 51-60 hours a week, 3.8% saying they worked 61-70 hours a week, 2.1% saying they worked 71-80 hours a week, and 1.3% saying they worked over 80 hours a week. Approximately another 30% reported working 36-40 hours a week.

Pie chart of how many hours on average physicians work in a week

As noted in the graphic, this does not include time spent charting at home.

When asked how much time they spend charting at home, over 75% responded they work on charting from home at least some.

Over 25% of our physician members reported spending an average 5+ hours a week charting from home, on top of their hours reported above.

You may have heard us talking about AI scribes on the groups. They are becoming more and more widespread, and can dramatically decrease the amount of time you spend charting. We hope our statistics in a few years will show that physicians spend a lot less time charting at home!

Pie chart of how many hours on average doctors spend charting a week

How much of the clinical time is spent on administrative tasks?

We asked how much of their weekly hours reported they spent on administrative tasks, not including the charting they took home.

  • 65% spend 0-5 hours weekly

  • 20% spend 6-10 hours weekly

  • 15% spend 10+ hours weekly

With over 50% of our members working more than the standard full time equivalent in America and 35% spending 6+ hours a week on administrative tasks, it’s not difficult to see where some of the burnout and frustration stems from.

Clear expectations for work hours and administrative duties can make a significant difference in a doctor’s work satisfaction. While it can be great to discuss these topics during the interviewing stage, make sure limits on expectations and requirements are also clearly stated in your employment agreement. If it isn’t in your contract, assume it isn’t true, regardless of what you discuss verbally or during the negotiation process.

How many patients an hour do doctors see?

Many physician contracts are set up on RVUs, so the volume of patient visits plays into their compensation. Our doctors reported the following average number of patient encounters an hour during patient facing hours:

  • 7% see 1 patient per hour

  • 28% see 2 patients per hour

  • 29% see 3 patients per hour

  • 21% see 4 patients per hour

  • 15% see 5+ patients per hour

Obviously, this varies quite a bit based on specialty and the model of practice, with practice models such as direct primary care allowing more time with patients, and employed positions, particularly in private equity backed physician practices, tending to see more patients. Private practices varied quite a bit depending on both specialty and total compensation. Check our physician salary and compensation data to find data relevant to your specialty and practice type.

What does the call schedule and compensation look like for doctors?

Quick stats on doctor call schedules and compensation

On call work is mandatory for 75% of our physician member respondents, and 65% of them aren’t being paid for being on call.

Of the doctors on call, 75% report they can do call from home, though an average of 10%-25% of the calls they receive require them to go in.We actually have a dedicated database for call compensation information, with much more detailed data about how much physicians are paid for call and what these call responsibilities look like.

What do physician compensation packages look like?

We asked our members not only about their salary, but about their full benefits package, as salary is only one component doctors should consider when evaluating a job offer. The total compensation package can look very different between two jobs that ostensibly offer the same salary, so you want to make sure you’re comparing all aspects of it, and prioritizing the things that matter to you most.

As a reminder, when looking at compensation, it’s better to dive into the data and compare apples to apples for your specific practice environment, locality, specialty, etc. The aggregate numbers below, while average, have a huge variation over different scenarios. Visit our physician compensation data for contract negotiations to access the full data for comparison.

Average Doctor Salary

The average base annual salary doctors in our communities reported is around $305,000, with the median salary being $275,000.

Keep in mind, this includes physicians who aren’t working full-time equivalents, which is again why it’s important to compare similar situations when trying to find what a reasonable offer for a job you’re considering is.

The average bonus income above the base annual salary is around $73,500, with a median of $30,000, which shows the wide variation in responses. When looking a little closer at the data, many of the physicians who reported large bonuses also reported high amounts of call responsibilities.

Sign-On and Relocation Bonuses

About 40% of physicians reported that they received a sign-on bonus. Many were structured as retention bonuses paid out over two to five years.

The average sign-on bonus received is $30,000.

25% of doctors reported they received a relocation bonus separate from a sign-on bonus. Relocation bonuses were offered in different structures, including:

  • Reimbursement for the full cost of the move

  • Reimbursement up to a certain amount

  • A flat rate relocation bonus amount

The average relocation bonus received is around $11,000.

If you choose to negotiate sign on and relocation bonuses in a contract, make sure that you review the termination clauses in the contract to review what, if anything, may need to be returned if you don’t end up staying at the job for a specified period of time. Most jobs offering these bonuses do have some strings attached so ask about those as early as when you receive your letter of intent before the actual official contract. While a letter of intent isn’t legally binding, it is harder to change agreed upon terms, so you want to make sure you understand what you’re signing.

CME Days

Our members receive an average of 5 CME days a year. Many physicians reported that their CME days were included in a lump sum with their vacation days.

If you need resources for CME, we’ve got some fun ones (with discounts!) on our CME Resources and Perks for Physicians page.

Sick Days

Some doctors are provided sick days “as needed.” Others have sick days wrapped in with vacation time as one overall PTO bucket, which often accrues over pay periods.

The average number of separate sick days doctors report is a little under 2 weeks.

Vacation Days

A lot of variation exists in the data across different specialties, schedules, and practice environments, including if physicians own their own practice or are employed. Vacation days from our database averaged to around 20-25 days of vacation or PTO (as some reported theirs included CME and sick time in a singular pool).

We are a huge advocate of using all your time off to rest and spend time with family, traveling (check out some cool travel perks and trips for physicians we have here!), exploring hobbies–whatever helps you unplug from the daily routine of your clinical work. Using your time away can be a great way to help combat or prevent burnout.


Transparency is a key way to help physicians navigate a constantly evolving healthcare landscape, while helping them negotiate their worth in the marketplace. While the aggregate data above can shed light on overall trends, remember to access our free doctors salary and compensation data to find the most relevant data points for your specific situation. If you’ve been on the communities for a while, as we always say - know your worth!

You can also visit our physician career page to explore all our resources to help you in your life in medicine.

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