What’s Included and Not Included in Physician Compensation Survey Data?

Physician compensation survey data is normally distributed to eager eyes waiting to see the current benchmarks, but a comprehensive look of the actual underlying content in those surveys could prove to be valuable, according to an article from VMG Health (pdf).

Jonathan Helm, a manager in the professional services agreements division of VMG Health, wrote that the definition of “total compensation” must be thoroughly examined to understand how survey data should be read.

For example, according to the 2011 Medical Group Management Association Physician Compensation and Production Survey: 2011 Report Based on 2010 Data, physician compensation was defined as all “compensation on a W2, 1099 or K1 [for partnerships] plus all voluntary salary reductions such as 401(k), 403(b), Section 125 Tax Savings Plan and Medical Savings Plan. The amount reported should include salary, bonus and/or incentive payments, research stipends, honoraria and distribution of profits.”

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