Physician- vs. hospital-owned settings: 10 notes on pay, autonomy & employment 

Here are 10 key notes on physician- and hospital-owned settings for pay, autonomy and employment numbers:

1. Primary care physicians operating in physician-owned settings reported $154,940 more in total collections, 289 more total encounters and $11,163 more in total compensation than those in hospital-owned settings, according to the Medical Group Management Association's "Provider Compensation and Productivity Data Report."

2. Surgical specialists in physician-owned settings saw $88,250 more in total collections, 372 less total encounters and $88,250 less in total compensation. 

3. Advanced practice providers in physician-owned settings saw $129,001 more in total collections, 483 less total encounters and $11,631 more in total compensation. 

4. In physician-owned settings, primary care physicians had 549 more work RVUs, surgical specialists had 1,607 and APPs had 1,027. 

5. Total payments for some of the most expensive diagnostic groups were between 8% to 15% lower in physician-owned hospitals than traditional facilities, a report analyzing 2019 Medicare data found.

6. Self-employed physicians have outearned employed consistently since 2019. 

7. Here is how employed and self-employed physician pay stacked up in the last five years, according to Medscape annual compensation reports. 

2023: $353,000

2022: $344,00

2021: $320,000

2020: $300,000

2019: $297,000

8. Physicians can earn big in ancillary revenue as a private practice physician. 

"Ancillary service revenue can reflect up to 50% to 60% of a private practicing physician's income, which, unfortunately, short of gain-sharing opportunities or partial ASC ownership, is usually unavailable in large healthcare system-employed practice situations," Jack Bert, MD, orthopedic surgeon at Woodbury (Minn.) Bone & Joint, told Becker's.

9. Single-specialty, solo practice and multispecialty groups are the highest-earning physician employment settings, according to Doximity's 2023 Physician Compensation Report

10. Autonomy is one of the fundamental reasons why physicians choose to remain independent. According to Medscape's "Employed Physicians Report 2023," only 50% of employed physicians are very satisfied or satisfied with their autonomy. 

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