Feature | Business | October 03, 2017

For U.S. Cardiologists, Age and Income Continue to Rise

New survey of 2,300-plus physicians reveals significant healthcare industry trends

For U.S. Cardiologists. Age and Income Continue to Rise
For U.S. Cardiologists, Age and Income Continue to Rise

Image courtesy of MedAxiom

October 3, 2017 — Despite expectations to the contrary, a new survey from cardiovascular healthcare consulting firm MedAxiom finds that overall, cardiology compensation continues to increase. The company’s fifth annual Cardiovascular Provider Compensation and Production Survey also revealed that one in five cardiologists is over the age of 61, and that overall compensation for private cardiologists is increasing faster than that of their integrated counterparts; the differential in compensation is at its lowest point in five years.

The data from the report also raises questions about how quickly the healthcare industry is moving from volume-based to value-based care and reimbursement. Despite industry leader predictions that volumes – particularly work RVUs (relative value units) – would decline due to the burgeoning value economy, overall cardiology production remains very constant. In addition, still less than 10 percent of physician compensation is tied to value.

“These findings come at a time of unprecedented change and uncertainty within the healthcare industry,” said Joel Sauer, vice president of MedAxiom Consulting and author of the report. “The somewhat surprising survey results are reflective of the need for data and analysis that helps us understand what is really going on, what we need to do to achieve the quadruple aim of healthcare, and where there are gaps. Obviously, creating economic alignment and strategies for dealing with physician slowdown are imperative.”

Each year MedAxiom surveys its membership, more than one-third of all cardiology and cardiovascular groups in the country, on financial, staffing, productivity and compensation metrics, and a number of demographic measures. Data for this 2017 report was collected over the 2008-2016 time frame and includes 162 practices and groups, representing 2,337 full-time physicians.

Other survey highlights include:

  • The median amount of revenue per full-time employee (FTE) physician (private) in 2016 is over $150,000 higher than it was is 2013;
  • Electrophysiologists grabbed the top earnings spot from interventional physicians, coming in at $607,336 per FTE;
  • The Northeast region emerged as the top earning geography, with median compensation of $606,681 per FTE;
  • The West region is the lowest paid geography for the fifth straight year;
  • Private cardiologists outproduced those in integrated models by nearly 14 percent;
  • Overall cardiology production remained very constant;
  • Forty-five percent of cardiologists are age 56+;
  • Female physicians now account for nearly 10 percent of the total cardiology workforce; and
  • Echo volumes are trending up and stress echo volumes are trending down.

In addition to the comprehensive data sections of the report, the 2017 MedAxiom Provider Compensation & Production Survey includes detailed analysis of the trends as well as in-depth articles on Internal Distribution Plans and A Detailed Review of Compensation per wRVU.

Read the full report here.


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For more information: www.medaxiom.com

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