Health is Wealth, they say, and while the phrase is commonly used to refer to the ultimate value of a healthy body, it means a lot more when it comes to doctors in the United States. For them, the job of keeping the population healthy is a highly financially rewarding one. Their earning potential is commensurate with the position of the US as one of the most expensive countries in the world when it comes to health care.
To those who might be curious, or those contemplating the financial value of pursuing a career in medicine, we took a look at how much doctors make in the US and how they stack up in contrast to their counterparts around the globe. Check it out below.
How Much Do Doctors Make in the US?
One basic fact when it comes to the salary of doctors in the US is, they are very well-paid. It is one of the few current benefits of the overly expensive status of healthcare in the country. They have a pay scale that matches the level of training and debts aspiring medical doctors have to undertake to begin a career in the profession.
But like most high-level professions in the US, it is not a given. While doctors in the US might earn significantly more compared to other professions, salaries still depend on a range of factors, such as your location (doctors in rural areas tend to make more) and your area of specialization.
Using data from the Medscape Report and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we examine the average salary for several types of doctors in the United States.
- Podiatrists – medical practitioners who deal in the business of feet make an average of $148,220 per year. The side of the average you fall to depends on your level of experience as well as your location.
- Dentists – if you intend to become a dentist, you can expect an average salary of $175,840 annually. There are about 113,00 dentists in the US, one of the more populated areas of specialization in the medical field.
- Pediatricians – doctors dedicated to treating children can make up to $183,240 on average a year. It is one of the less populated fields in the US, with just over 28,000 of them in the country.
- Internists – can make up to $196,490 a year on average. Like a lot of the specializations in this list, earning in the top half of the average depends on experience and location. Internists working in the lowest populated cities and states can expect to make a lot more.
- Physicians and Surgeons – this encompassing category of medical doctors can make up to $203,880. Some of the specializations included are radiologists, pathologists, neurologists, and immunologists.
- Family and General Practitioners – doctors who are treating sicknesses and diseases that tend to affect the general population can make up to $211,780 a year on average.
- Psychiatrists – $220,380 a year. There is a growing demand for medical personnel dedicated to fixing the mind, and there are only just over 25,000 of them in the US.
- Obstetricians and Gynecologists – they can make up to $238,320 a year. Although they cater to half of the US population, there are just over 18,000 of them in the country.
- Surgeons – the average salary for a doctor in the US is $255,110 a year.
- Anesthesiologists – Anesthesiologists are the highest paid medical personnel in the US on average. The average salary for the medical field is $267,020.
Overall, the average salary of medical doctors in the US is $240,525 per year. Additionally, according to data from the Doximity Report, locum tenens medical professionals, i.e. doctors who can work when and where they want, earn, on average, 30% to 50% more than doctors who work in permanent positions.
How Doctors Earn In Some Other Countries Around the World
If you are looking to practice medicine outside of the US, here are a couple of countries where doctors are just as well-paid, even more than the US.
According to data from OECD, doctors in Luxembourg are the highest paid in the world on average. They make as much as $357,336 on average, benefitting from the country’s small population. Switzerland follows with an average yearly salary of $237,106. Iceland, Republic of Ireland, the UK, Netherlands, Germany, Israel, and New Zealand are in the top ten of the countries with the highest average salary for doctors. The average salary for these countries ranges between $202,034 and $138,261.
Countries you might want to avoid include China, Egypt, Cuba, Poland, and Mexico, where, on average, doctors earn less than $1,000 per month.