The year is 2014 and yes, according to recent research, it seems there may be a gender gap between male and female physicians. In the past, the compensation difference between male and female physicians was attributed to the fact that men reported working longer hours and being employed in higher paying specialties. In fact, back in good ‘ol days of the 1990’s, it was found that young male physicians earned 14 percent more per hour than their young female constituents due to these reasons. After compensating for these differences, The New England Journal of Medicine concluded male and female physicians were actually paid equally.
Let’s fast forward to present day, shall we? Last year, The Journal of the American Medical Association conducted another gender gap study. By simply evaluating the mean salary of survey respondents, they found that female physicians were paid $13,399 less than male physicians each year. In an effort to determine the reasons why the inequality existed, equalizing adjustments were made for specialty, academic rank, leadership positions, publications, and research time. In these results, male physicians earned $12,194 more per year than comparable female physicians.
Over a 30 year career, that difference is over $365,000.What do you think the difference can be attributed to? Is it because there is still an unconscious bias by employers? Or maybe it’s because women tend to be less aggressive in compensation negotiations? What do you think?