Low-Paid, Debt-Ridden Residents Still Optimistic
Despite an average resident salary of $55,330 a year and over a third (36%) claiming they owe more than $200K in loans when they finish residency, 83% of residents polled by Medscape said they are still looking forward to practicing as a physician. Medscape’s recent survey, Residents Salary & Debt Report 2014, polled 1,200 residents across 25 specialties and revealed that orthopaedic residents make an average annual salary of $57,000. The highest average resident salaries of $65,000 are in critical care, and the lowest ($52,000) are in family medicine.
Despite low salaries, heavy debt load, and long work hours (66% of Year 1 residents spend 60+ hours a week at work), roughly half (48%) of male residents and 60% of female residents said they are compensated fairly.
Gender influences salaries in resident programs, but the male/female differential is only 4%, much lower than the 24% difference by gender among non-resident physicians. Geography also makes a difference in resident pay. Residents in the Northwest receive the highest salary (an average of $71K) followed by those in the Northeast, with an average salary of $61K.