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Thursday Apr 18, 2019

Family physician pay goes up, satisfaction with pay goes down

An annual survey of physician compensation shows a healthy gain for physicians. How do you compare?


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Posted at 09:00AM Apr 18, 2019 by David Twiddy | Comments [0]

Wednesday Feb 06, 2019

How to calculate the value of team documentation

Having a medical assistant or nurse handle the paperwork related to patient visits can help you be more efficient and increase revenue. Here’s how to calculate the value.


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Posted at 11:15AM Feb 06, 2019 by Kate Freeman | Comments [0]

Thursday Apr 26, 2018

Medicare looks to contract directly with physicians and suppliers

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is investigating a new payment model that would directly contract with Medicare providers and suppliers.


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Posted at 05:15PM Apr 26, 2018 by Kent Moore | Comments [0]

Thursday Apr 12, 2018

Compensation is up for family physicians

Family physicians saw their annual compensation increase an average of 5 percent over last year, reflecting an industrywide rise in physician pay.


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Posted at 04:15PM Apr 12, 2018 by David Twiddy | Comments [0]

Monday Dec 04, 2017

Are you getting paid for non-face-to-face prolonged care?

One of the most frequent complaints I hear from physicians is about the work done before and after an office visit, whether done the same day or another day. They say it is frustrating to spend so much time on those activities and receive no payment.


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Posted at 04:30PM Dec 04, 2017 by Betsy Nicoletti | Comments [0]

Friday Nov 10, 2017

Medicare payment news for 2018: the key takeaways

As 2017 draws to a close, the Medicare program is notifying physicians how they will be evaluated and paid for treating patients in 2018. In case you’re not an avid reader of the Federal Register (and most people aren’t), let’s go over some details.


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Posted at 04:15PM Nov 10, 2017 by Kent Moore | Comments [0]

Friday Sep 29, 2017

Oct. 2 represents key 2017 MIPS deadline for some physicians

If you or your practice plans to participate fully or partially in the Merit-based Incentive Payment System in 2017, and you plan to report 90 consecutive days of data for the year, then Monday, Oct. 2, is the last day you can begin.


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Posted at 01:30PM Sep 29, 2017 by Kent Moore | Comments [0]

Thursday Aug 17, 2017

Are you ready to provide FAA BasicMed exams to pilots?

As of May 1, Congress changed the rules for how the pilots of small private planes may choose to receive medical clearance to fly. Instead of undergoing the full FAA-sanctioned physician exam, certain pilots can get certified by their personal physician.


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Posted at 04:14PM Aug 17, 2017 by Barbara Hays | Comments [0]

Thursday Apr 06, 2017

Family physician compensation stayed level in 2016

The average annual compensation for family physicians remained stable last year as a majority expressed contentment with their pay and the state of medicine.

The Medscape Physician Compensation Report 2017(www.medscape.com) shows that family physicians responding to the survey received an average of $209,000 in total compensation in 2016, up almost 1 percent from the previous year but remaining second to the last among all specialties. The average compensation for all physicians included in the survey rose more than 5 percent to $294,000, with the highest average compensation achieved once again by orthopedists at $489,000. The lowest-paid specialty was pediatrics with an average of $202,000, which represented a decrease in compensation.

When broken down by state, data showed that the three top-earning states for physicians were North Dakota ($361,000 average), Alaska ($359,000), and South Dakota ($354,000). Researchers attributed this at least partly to government efforts to bring more physicians to rural and economically disadvantaged areas.

Fifty-three percent of family physicians said they felt their compensation amount was fair, about even with the 54 percent of all survey respondents who said the same. By comparison, 52 percent of family physicians believed they were fairly compensated in 2015. Emergency medicine physicians (at 68 percent) felt the most satisfaction with their compensation in the new survey, while nephrologists (at 41 percent) were the least satisfied.

Among family physicians, 77 percent said they would choose medicine as a career if they had the choice again, in line with the overall average. But family physicians were second from the last (at 67 percent) when asked if they would choose the same specialty. Internists were last at 64 percent.

Although the survey did not disclose physician employment trends as it has in past years, it did note that self-employed physicians, on average, tend to make more than their employed colleagues ($343,000 vs. $269,000). The difference varies widely between specialties, with self-employed primary care physicians earning $223,000 and employed primary care physicians earning $214,000, a 4-percent difference.

The gender pay gap continued to shrink for primary care physicians, albeit slowly. Male physicians in primary care reported earning 16 percent more than female physicians, down from 17 percent the previous year. The gap actually widened among other specialists, where male physicians made 37 percent more then female physicians, a 4 percent increase over the previous year. Researchers said this may be because of fewer female physicians participating in some high-paying specialties.

Gender-based pay disparities are smallest at 18 percent for physicians younger than 35 years old; the pay difference is 35 percent or more for older age groups.

The pool of physicians operating in a cash-only or “concierge” practice actually diminished slightly, with 9 percent of respondents saying they belonged to those types of practices. Ten percent reported operating those types of practices in 2015.


Posted at 04:28PM Apr 06, 2017 by David Twiddy | Comments [0]

Tuesday Apr 05, 2016

Compensation for family physicians rises in new survey

Family physicians saw their average overall compensation increase last year, and they felt slightly less anxious about their pay and their profession, according to a new report.

The Medscape Physician Compensation Report 2016(www.medscape.com), released April 1, reported that family physicians made an average of $207,000 in total compensation in 2015, up 6 percent from the previous year. Most specialties saw gains in annual compensation, with the highest-paid physicians being orthopedists with an average of $443,000. The lowest-paid specialty was pediatrics with an average of $204,000.

In addition to receiving higher pay, 52 percent of all physicians (and 52 percent of family physicians) said they believed their compensation was fair. By comparison, half of all physicians and 48 percent of family physicians felt they were fairly compensated in 2014. Dermatologists (66 percent) felt the most comfort with their compensation, while urologists (42 percent) were the least satisfied. Among family physicians, 73 percent said they would still choose medicine as a career if they had to do it all over again, which is up from 69 percent five years ago. The percentage of family physicians who would stick with the specialty, however, has fallen from 44 percent in 2011 to 29 percent now.

The trend of physicians choosing to work for hospitals and other large health care groups appeared to remain steady with 35 percent of men and 23 percent of women sticking with private practice, virtually the same percentages as a year ago.

Male and female compensation continued to have a disparity, but it is shrinking. Male family physicians made an average of $220,000 versus $183,000 for female family physicians, a difference of 20 percent. The difference was 28 percent in 2011. Also, survey results showed that female physicians faced a similarly sized pay gap regardless of whether they were employed or self-employed.

Despite the continued focus on “direct primary,” “concierge,” or “direct pay” care models, those types of practices remain very much in the minority. Only 10 percent of family physicians reported being in a concierge or cash-only practice, the same amounts as in 2014. The researchers said it appeared private practice physicians looking to get away from the regulatory and financial headaches of traditional practice are more likely to go into employed positions rather than go the direct-pay route.

The survey also said 39 percent of family physicians were in an accountable care organization (ACO) and 7 percent planned to join one in the coming year. By comparison, 35 percent belonged to one in 2014 and 8 percent planned to join one.


Posted at 09:00AM Apr 05, 2016 by David Twiddy | Comments [0]

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The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of FPM or the AAFP. Some payers may not agree with the advice given. This is not a substitute for current CPT and ICD-9 manuals and payer policies. All comments are moderated and will be removed if they violate our Terms of Use.

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