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Analysis

Gender Gaps at Physician Practices May Effect Pay

By Credentialing Resource Center  
   August 12, 2020

Adjustments to salary were made based on physician specialty, years of experience, hours worked, measures of clinical workload, practice type, and geography.

A version of this article was first published August 11, 2020, by HCPro's Credentialing Resource Center, a sibling publication to HealthLeaders.

A new study found that pay gaps between men and women are greater at physician practices that also have greater proportions of male physicians.

The study, from The BMJ, looked at salary data of 18,800 U.S. physicians from nearly 9,900 physician practices between 2014 and 2018.

Adjustments to salary were made based on physician specialty, years of experience, hours worked, measures of clinical workload, practice type, and geography.

“Outside of healthcare, increased workplace sex diversity, a reduction in occupational segregation, and an increase in the proportion of female managers has been associated with reduced sex differences in income and smaller sex-based wage gaps,” write the study authors. 

The study results show that the same could be true in healthcare as well. 

Among non-surgical specialists (about 11,500), the difference in annual income was $36,600 in practices with 50% or less of male physicians compared with $91,700 for practices with at least 90% of male physicians.

Similar findings were observed among surgical specialists, with a difference in annual income of $46,500 for practices with 50% or less of male physicians compared with $149,00 for practices with at least 90% of male physicians. 

“If causal, our findings suggest that for specialist physicians, group composition could be an important determinant of differences in income between male and female physicians,” write the study authors.  

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