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Journal of ASPR - Summer 2012 - MGMA Benchmarking Report: Physicians Report Moderate Shifts in Compe
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MGMA Benchmarking Report: Physicians Report Moderate Shifts in Compensation in 2011

Press Release from the Medical Group Management Association, July 10, 2012

Physicians reported moderate shifts in compensation in 2011, according to respondents to the MGMA Physician Compensation and Production Survey: 2012 Report Based on 2011 Data. For example, primary care physicians reported a 5.16 percent increase in median compensation. Physicians in family practice (without OB) reported median earnings of $200,114, and those in pediatric/adolescent medicine earned $203,948 in median compensation. Internists also reported a 5 percent increase in compensation.

“There appears to be a growing focus on primary care providers in anticipation of new methodologies in payment, a focus on coordination of care, and the imperative to control utilization and costs in the system,” said Michael L. Nochomovitz, MD, president, University Hospitals Physician Services, Cleveland. “There is increasing employment of physicians by integrated delivery systems and hospitals, which may also explain these shifts in compensation for primary care physicians.”

Radiologists, anesthesiologists and psychiatrists were among specialists who reported increases in compensation, but their gains lagged behind increases experienced by other specialists. For example, psychiatrists’ compensation increased 3.86 percent since 2010 compared to the median growth of other specialists in the past year.

“The industry is moving toward a team approach in delivering care, which would include behavioral health care components,” continued Nochomovitz, former association board member. “But the incentives for this model of care are still limited on a national scale.”

Specialists who reported slight decreases in compensation include nephrologists, OB/GYN: Gynecology only and radiation oncologists.

The survey report also contains data on compensation and RVUs for nonphysician providers. For example, physician assistants (PAs) in primary care earned $92,635 in median compensation and surgical PAs reported $111,246 in median compensation.

“Nonphysician providers continue to play a pivotal role in the provision of healthcare services throughout the United States,” said Todd Evenson, director, Data Solutions, MGMA-ACMPE. “As demand for primary care practitioners continues to increase, the market will respond by complementing the activities of physicians with the skill set of these and other professionals.”

For more than 25 years, the MGMA Physician Compensation and Production Survey Report has been the most respected benchmarking report in the industry. It offers detailed information, rigorous in-house data validation and analysis. This year’s report provides data on more than 62,000 providers — the largest provider population of any physician compensation survey in the United States. The 2012 report includes data for physicians and nonphysician providers in more than 170 specialties, including demographic categories ranging from geographic region and practice setting (in small, medium, and large groups) to years in specialty and majority ownership. The report also contains various performance ratios illustrating the relationship between compensation and production and data on collections for professional charges and work RVUs.

Note: MGMA surveys depend on voluntary participation and may not be representative of the industry. Readers are urged to review the entire survey report when making conclusions regarding trends or other observations.

Journal of ASPR - Summer 2012