2018 Saw More Employed Physicians Than Self-Employed

In 2018, employed physicians outnumbered self-employed physicians.

HealthDay News — In 2018, employed physicians outnumbered self-employed physicians, according to a report from the American Medical Association (AMA).

Researchers from the AMA used data from the Physician Practice Benchmark Surveys to identify the practice arrangements of physicians between 2012 and 2018. Information was collected on employment status, practice type, practice size, and practice ownership structure.

According to the report, 2018 was the first year that fewer patient care physicians had ownership in their practice than were employees (45.9 versus 47.4 percent). The percent of physicians who were owners dropped from 53.2 in 2012. Younger physicians and women were less likely to be owners. From 2012 to 2018, the percentage of physicians in solo practice decreased from 18.4 to 14.8 percent. Although most physicians still work in small practices, this share has decreased since 2012. In 2018, 54.0 percent of physicians continued to work in practices wholly owned by physicians, although this proportion decreased from 60.1 percent in 2012. The share of physicians working directly for a hospital or in a practice at least partially owned by a hospital increased (from 29.0 to 34.7 percent).

“The AMA stands ready to assist with valuable resources that can help physicians navigate their choice of practice options and offers innovative strategies and resources to ensure physicians in all practice sizes and settings can thrive in the changing health environment,” Barbara L. McAneny, M.D., president of the AMA, said in a statement.

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