2015 Physician Practice Preference Survey
The Medicus Firm conducted its 12th annual Physician Practice Preference and Relocation Survey in the Spring, and released the results in the summer of 2015. Respondents answered 19 questions via an online survey, the link to which was sent directly to physicians, PAs, and NPs. A total of 2,685 providers representing 19 specialties and 50 states completed the survey, which included practicing physicians, as well as some residents and fellows. As it does each year, the survey included questions regarding compensation, practice preferences, motivation, job search, career goals, and industry trends. Highlights: Physicians are slightly more optimistic about their future income, with 10.6% expecting next year’s compensation to “increase significantly,” compared to 7.0% answering that way last year. A higher percentage of physicians are open to new opportunities in the coming year. Only 34% said they will definitely NOT make a career change this year, compared to 43% last year. The average number of years responding providers remained in their first job is 3.61 years. The average number of jobs held so far in respondents’ careers is 2.49. The most favored practice setting remains single-specialty group (30.3%) among practicing physicians. Solo practice declined further from favor to 4.9% (from 7.7%) among practicing physicians. Physicians’ opinions of health reform (ACA) softened moderately. This year, 16.74% of physicians gave the ACA an “F” as an overall grade for effectiveness, compared to 22.35% last year. Trends in Physician Practice Preferences: The most favored practice setting remains single-specialty group (30.3%) for practicing physicians, while residents and fellows showed a preference for hospital-employed practice (26.1%). Physicians in training overwhelmingly favor major metro areas, even more so than last year, at 36.3%, while practicing physicians favor suburban (33.1%) or mid-sized (23.2%) practice settings over major metro (22.6%). Practicing physicians were almost twice as likely to consider practicing in a small city or rural community, than those coming out of training. Solo practice declined further from favor to 4.9% (from 7.7%) among practicing physicians. Meanwhile, government and military practice increased in popularity from 2.5% to 4.1% of respondents selecting it as their most desirable practice structure. Physicians’ opinions of health reform (ACA) softened moderately. When asked to grade the ACA, the percentage of failing grades declined in each of five categories/objectives, including the overall grade. This year, 16.74% of physicians gave the ACA an “F”, compared to 22.35% last year. Could the coming year bring increases in physician turnover? Only 34% of physicians completely rule out a career change within the next year, compared to 43.1% last year. Additionally, more of the physicians considering a move are doing so for financial reasons (31.1%) vs. 25.3% who were money motivated last year. For a copy of the 2015 results, please email surveys@TheMedicusFirm.com.