Survey examines physician practice in NY

Annemarie Franczyk

Demand for primary doctors in New York state has caught up to the critical need for specialists, according to a recent study from the Center for Health Workforce Studies at University at Albany‘s School of Public Health.

As a result, new primary care physicians reported an increasing number of job offers and increasing median starting income.

Data from report also show that nearly half of survey respondents with confirmed practice plans were staying in New York. Respondents planning to practice outside of New York were asked their reasons for leaving the state. The most commonly cited reasons were proximity to family and inadequate salary. Thirteen percent indicated that they never intended to practice in New York.

“There is growing concern about an emerging shortage of physicians nationwide,” said Jean Moore, center director. “New physicians, particularly those who train in the state, are an important source of New York doctors. It is critical to understand why new physicians are leaving the state and use this information to develop strategies that will retain the ones we need.”

The study also noted:

  • The median starting income for new physicians grew by 13 percent from 2005 to 2007.
  • Individual specialties with the highest median starting income were orthopedics ($259,700), radiology ($257,000), general anesthesiology ($242,100) and cardiology ($241,900).
  • Median starting income was lowest for primary care physicians ($142,100), and starting income for physicians in pediatrics was significantly lower than all other primary care specialties ($110,650).
  • Forty-five percent of survey respondents were female, up slightly from 2005 (42 percent).
  • Twelve percent of survey respondents were underrepresented minorities, down slightly from 2005.

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