Surgeons paid more than primary care physicians for medical directorships

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted May 24, 2010

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The money physicians earn by taking on medical director roles at hospitals or other health institutions varies widely by specialty, practice ownership and duties, according to a report analyzing data on 209 facilities across the country. It was issued in April by the Medical Group Management Assn.

"Medical Directorship and On-Call Compensation Survey: 2010 Report Based on 2009 Data" found that surgical subspecialists earned an average of $40,000 extra annually for those roles. Primary care physicians took home an extra $24,000. Emergency physicians in hospital-owned practices earned about $20,000 more, but those in nonhospital-owned practices were paid about $60,000 more.

The effect of hospital ownership was reversed in primary care. Family physicians who also do obstetrics and gynecology at hospital-owned practices earn an extra $23,250 for a medical directorship. Those in independent practices were paid about $8,400.

The financial impact of job responsibilities also varied. Taking care of physician education and relations increased the medical directorship pay of primary care doctors. Handling health care technology had the greatest effect on the pay of surgical specialists.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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