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Healthcare organizations increase investment in physician recruitment to meet provider shortages
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Healthcare organizations increase investment in physician recruitment to meet provider shortages

St. Paul, MN, August 19, 2014 — The Association of Staff Physician Recruiters (ASPR) released the 2014 ASPR In-House Physician Recruitment Benchmarking Report, which highlights increased investments by healthcare organizations in their in-house physician recruitment programs as well as growing shortages for primary care providers.

The report, based on nearly 5,000 physician and advanced practice provider searches conducted in 2013 by 145 healthcare organizations across the country, shows an increase in recruitment activity and investment between 2012 and 2013. The median number of provider searches conducted per organization increased from 20 to 26, the median number of in-house physician recruitment professionals per organization grew from one to two and annual recruitment budgets increased from a median of $245,000 to $321,000 from 2012 to 2013. Growth in these areas is an indicator that healthcare organizations are increasing their investments in their in-house physician recruitment departments.

“We’re seeing healthcare organizations putting a greater emphasis on physician recruitment as a result of the growing demand for healthcare providers and increasing levels of difficulty in filling open positions,” says Suzanne Anderson, associate director of medical staff recruitment at Duke University Medical Center and ASPR benchmarking project leader. “The increase in staffing levels and annual budgets shows that healthcare organizations understand they must invest in their recruitment programs in order to be successful and meet the healthcare needs of their communities.”

The report also confirms that primary care continues to be a shortage area and in high demand. Nearly 70 percent of organizations searched for a family medicine physician in 2013. This specialty was the most common physician search, followed by hospital medicine and internal medicine. More than 19 percent of all searches were for advanced practice providers. Approximately 71 percent of nurse practitioner and 50 percent of physician assistant searches were specifically for primary care, an increase from 38 percent and 43 percent respectively in the prior year.

Nearly 38 percent of all open positions remained unfilled at year’s end, up from 33 percent the prior year. Approximately half of all family medicine and internal medicine positions went unfilled creating large gaps in primary care access in many communities. The percent of unfilled positions for both of these primary care specialties increased over the prior year with rates increasing from 36 percent to 47 percent for family medicine and from 41 percent to 52 percent for internal medicine positions.

“With the impact of the Affordable Care Act, it is no surprise that this year’s report shows a growing need for primary care providers, both physicians as well as advanced practice providers,” says Jennifer Metivier, executive director of ASPR. “We anticipate this trend will continue as organizations try to keep pace with the increasing number of patients seeking primary care services.”

The report provides additional metrics on variables such as time to fill, interview to hire ratios, average number of searches per recruiter, recruiter compensation and departmental expense data, which is stratified by organization type, population, geography and other factors. This data enables healthcare organizations to evaluate and improve upon their provider recruitment processes and success rates.

For more information regarding the ASPR 2014 In-House Physician Recruitment Benchmarking Report, visit

About ASPR: The Association of Staff Physician Recruiters (ASPR) is a professional organization exclusively for in-house physician recruitment professionals. ASPR is the leading authority on physician recruitment, retention and onboarding. The organization’s focus is to support and enhance the careers of in-house physician recruitment professionals through educational opportunities, industry research and networking opportunities. For more information, please visit, or find us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.