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Pediatrician Salaries Depend on a Number of Factors
As with any job, there are several factors that will directly affect a pediatrician’s salary. Of course, the most obvious would be education and experience, including specialty and subspecialty board certification. Whether the professional decides to work for a medical facility or open their own practice will also impact their salary, although as will be discussed later other costs can be defrayed that tends to equalize pay levels. Finally, geographic location within the country will change the expected salary for a pediatrician.
For a pediatrician out of residency for just a few years the average starting salary is around $135,000, while overall the average pediatrician salary is in the area of $175,000 a year.
Pediatrician Salary by Subspecialty
As with any medical career, a major determinant of salary is the level of specialization. While the average salary for pediatricians is around $175,000, that of pediatric specialists is typically higher. Pediatricians with at least 3 years experience who are specialized in neurology or oncology/hematology can typically earn up to $250,000, while pediatric surgeons typically earn $400,000-$500,000 a year.
CejkaSearch.com published the following data showing median pediatrician compensation, by specialty. The original data is from the AMGA (American Medical Group Association) 2009 Physician Compensation Survey:
|Pediatric Hematology / Oncology||$205,999|
|Pediatric Infectious Disease||$199,165|
|Pediatric Intensive Care||$265,913|
|Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery||$424,367|
|Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine
Additional pediatric subspecialties not listed above include:
- Critical Care Medicine
- Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics
- Emergency Medicine
- Hospice and Palliative Medicine
- Medical Toxicology
- Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine
- Neurodevelopmental Disabilities
- Sports Medicine
- Transplant Hepatology
- Sleep Medicine
Private Practice Pediatrics Salary vs. Salaries of Employed Pediatricians
Private practice physicians typically have higher gross incomes and more autonomy than physicians employed by medical institutions. That said, physicians in large practices or hospital-associated practices report that once malpractice coverage, retirement contributions, life insurance and health benefits are taken into account, their compensation comes close to that of private practice physicians. Employed physicians also tend to report that they carry more of a "family friendly" 40 hour work week than the private practice physician, and that they appreciate the paid vacation time. Ultimately, when deciding whether to work in a private practice or as an employed pediatrician, your desired lifestyle and personal preferences can carry as much weight as the expected fiscal returns.
Locum Tenens Salary
Another factor that will directly affect salary is whether the pediatrician pursues a career in a permanent, long-term setting (either at their own practice or at a medical facility) or as a locum tenens physician.
For Locum Tenens, salary will depend on how the temporary work is laid out. Medical facilities may pay by the hour, per diem, by the week, or by the month. Still others pay for on-call pediatrician work. Overtime may be compensated at a time-and-a-half rate.
A typical per diem rate for the average locum tenens pediatrician is in the range of $400 to $430, with malpractice insurance, travel and housing expenses usually covered by the hiring company.
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