Tuesday, February 10, 2015

One Distinction Anesthesiologists Would Rather Not Have.

I came across this article from Becker's Hospital Review. Titled "Compensation growth among physician specialties," I thought this looked promising. I could use a little good cheer after reluctantly predicting the end of anesthesiology as we know it.

The article concerns a physician survey conducted by SullivanCotter and Associates. They are a consulting firm specializing in physician compensation. There is no information on the number of physicians who participated in the survey or any other demographic data so take it for what it's worth.

The information initially looked promising. In general, nearly every specialty saw its reimbursements rise from 2013 to 2014. Great. I'll just look down this chart to see how well anesthesiologists fared. Okay. Urology. Up 7%. Good. Next. Gastroenterology. Up 6%. This shows promise. According to the Medscape Physician Compensation Survey, anesthesiologists usually rank right up there with GI in earnings so we couldn't be that bad. So I keep looking down the long comprehensive chart. And keep looking. And looking.

Pediatrics, up 5%. Hospitalist, up 4%. Family Medicine, up 3%. Where is this going? Did they forget to survey anesthesiologists? Just when I was starting to think that anesthesiologists were not included in their compensation poll, I arrive at the rock bottom of the chart. And guess who resides down there. Anesthesiologists, DOWN 2%.

WTH. Granted the median compensation is still pretty good at $368,510. But we were the only medical field to show a decrease in earnings year over year. Our services aren't even valued enough to maintain our previous year's income, which would actually be a decrease when inflation is taken into account.

Is this another sign that the anespocolypse is upon us? One year's worth of data doesn't make a trend. We'll have to wait another year or two to discover if it's time to start moonlighting in a profession where there is real pricing power and you don't have to take sh** from anyone--nursing.

1 comment:

  1. As an ENT resident about to finish my training. An anesthesiologist's salary is absolutely riduculous. All the cases I've been in, the "MDA" peeks in and signs that they were present and then goes "charting". CRNA's do the intubation and are in the room 90% of the time and are consistently the person who responds to my concerns along with my staff's. Based on what the anesthesia residents have told me, social hour is every other hour for staff. And they are especially looking forward to practicing due to great pay, great hours, and CRNAs doing the majority of the administration of anesthesia. CRNAs make +150k and MDA's making 300k+, the ultimate money making field.