Pediatricians: Salary Overview
Pediatricians are medical doctors who diagnose and treat illnesses and injuries in children from infancy through adolescence.
Their job description is similar to that of a general physician, which means that they record the patient’s medical history, order tests, recommend treatment plans, answer the patient’s and parent’s questions.
Pediatricians are also responsible for preventing health issues by administering vaccinations and instructing parents on how to best care for their children.
If the patients need special care or a special set of tests, pediatricians may refer them to specialists.
Most pediatricians spend between 30-45 hours per week seeing patients, according to Medscape Pediatrician Compensation Report 2018 and many of them spend between 10 and more than 20 hours a week doing paperwork.
The report is based on an online survey made across 20,329 respondents across 29+ medical specialties.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for pediatricians was $175,310 in May 2019 but salaries in this field vary depending on the physician’s level of experience, the region, and the employer.
The same report shows that the vast majority of pediatricians (90%) earned more than $69,940 per year.
When discussing pediatrician salary we should also mention that many medical school students take out student loans to cover their educational expenses, loans which they have to repay during their first years of practice.
This equates into thousands of dollars spent each month on loan repayments which can be hard for an entry-level pediatrician who is making less than $100,000 a year.
Pediatrician Salary by Industry
The report published by BLS shows that pediatricians held approximately 29,740 jobs in the United States in 2019.
Most of them work in offices of physicians, a field that hired 21,120 pediatricians in 2019 and paid them, on average $190,420.
General medical and surgical hospitals hired approximately 6,080 pediatricians which were paid, on average, $167,950 a year.
The average annual salary for pediatricians who were employed in outpatient care centers was $203,680, higher than the median for this profession.
Pediatricians employed by colleges, universities, and professional schools earned, on average, $105,890, significantly lower than the median for this occupation.
Specialty hospitals hired approximately 250 pediatricians in 2019 and paid them, on average, with $187,480 a year.
Some pediatricians are self-employed and their income varies depending on the region where the office is located, their reputation and level of experience.
According to the Medscape Pediatrician Compensation Report 2018, 69% of all pediatricians were employed while 28% of them were self-employed.
The same report shows that pediatricians who were employed earned on average $206,000 a year in 2018 while those who were self-employed made $231,000.
Benefits Received by Pediatricians
The Medscape Pediatrician Compensation Report 2018 shows that 83 percent of all pediatricians received professional liability/malpractice coverage, 80% of them received health insurance, and 72% received paid time off.
Other benefits received by pediatricians include retirement plans, dental insurance, vision insurance, life insurance, bonuses, and other perks.
Job Prospects for Pediatricians
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for pediatricians is projected to grow 2 percent from 2018 to 2028.
As the population grows, pediatricians will continue to be needed to offer specialized healthcare to children from infancy to adolescence.
This growth will be tempered by the fact that in many cases physician assistants and nurse practitioners are hired to perform some tasks under the supervision of a single physician.
This reduces the number of physicians needed in some practices.
Job prospects also vary depending on the region and the local economy.
Being willing to relocate to an underserved area can improve your employment opportunities.
* Based on information from the May 2021 salary report from the BLS. The figures represent accumulated data for all states of employment for Pediatricians. BLS data represents averages and medians for workers at all levels of education and experience. This data doesn't represent starting salaries.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.