Primary Care Docs Average More Hospital Revenue Than Specialists

John Commins, May 20, 2013

A survey of hospital CFOs shows primary care physicians generated a combined average of $1,566,165 for their affiliated hospitals in the last year. Other specialties generated a combined annual average of $1,424,917, the lowest average in five years, data shows.

Primary care physicians have emerged as key money makers for their affiliated hospitals and for the first time are generating more revenues on average than their specialist colleagues, a survey data from Merritt Hawkins (PDF) shows.

"For the first time in the survey's history we have primary care overtaking specialties on an average basis," says Travis Singleton, a senior vice president at the Irving, TX-based physician recruiting firm. "I was pleasantly surprised to see the survey show that. We knew it was happening, but we didn't know if the market had shown that yet."

The survey asked hospital chief financial officers to quantify how much revenue physicians in 18 specialties generated for their hospitals in the last 12 months, including net inpatient and outpatient revenue from patient referrals, tests, prescriptions, and procedures performed or ordered in the hospital.

Primary care physicians—family physicians, general internists, and pediatricians—generated a combined average of $1,566,165 for their affiliated hospitals in the last year. The remaining 15 specialties included in the survey generated a combined annual average of $1,424,917, the lowest average in the five years the survey has been conducted, the data showed.

John Commins

John Commins is a senior editor at HealthLeaders Media.

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