I think we found the lowest paid doctor....

Today’s NY Times is highlighting this JAMA Internal Medicine article about the salary disparity between male and female physicians at 24 public medical schools. A major strength of this study is that the findings are not based upon self-report or survey—public medical school salaries are subject to freedom of information laws, so the data sources were government financial records. 

The main finding: after adjustment for multiple variables that impact salary, female physicians are still paid almost 20K less than their male counterparts. The graphic below is from the NYT article, using data from Table 3 of the JAMA IM paper:

As you can see, ID is very near the bottom in salary—for adjusted salary, among women only neurologists are paid less, and among men only family physicians. But wait, family medicine and neurology each require 4 years or fewer of graduate medical training, whereas ID requires 5-6 years. So by my rough calculation, adjusting for ‘years of additional training required to practice’, the lowest paid doctor is....drum roll please:

The female ID physician!

This point about years of training is very important as it relates to recruitment into ID. Check out the difference in salary between ID and Internal Medicine above. For how many subspecialties do additional years of training reduce earning potential? We’ve covered this ground before, but of course this helps explain the two graphs below (reference here). 


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