Sunday, February 2, 2014

2013 AAPA Salary Report Review

The 2013 American Academy of Physician Assistants Salary Report, A Review

It's important to stay updated on the salary of a PA, specifically PAs in the field you plan to go into. This can have positive or negative effects on your future and could eventually enable you to single out the speciality, subspecialty, or practice setting you choose for yourself. This salary report also helps PAs ready to go into practice negotiate the best compensation package, hourly rates, salary rate, bonus packages, productivity measures, and benefits packages available. But this salary report isn't all about salary, it also talks about schools, coursework, and other information about becoming a PA you might find useful along your journey. Remember, this is just a review, so I'll just highlight a few that I think are cool and important, but if you want to see more, you'll need to purchase a membership. Lets get started!

The first part of the Salary Report is on PA Facts - this is basic information not regarding salary you might find useful.
Table 1. Table featured in AAPA Annual Survey 2013. This
particular table features the area of medicine and surgery
PAs work in by percentage. 

  1. The average PA program takes 26 months to complete; nearly all award master's degrees
  2. 93,000 certified PAs work in every medical and surgical setting across the country
    1. 37.5% practice in a hospital setting
    2. 38.1% work in a  group practice or solo physician office
    3. 24.4% work in community health centers, freestanding surgical facilities, nursing homes, school or college based facilities, industrial settings, or correctional institutions
  3. Each year, a PA treats around 3,500 patients
  4. A PA writes approximately 2,600-5,200 prescriptions each year. [That's about 50-100/week!]

Salary Report

This report was collected by a voluntary survey released online to AAPA members and non-members between March-July 2013. An astonishing 18,000 PAs responded, reporting valuable information about those working more than 32 hours/week for their primary clinical employer. The information is also presented in such a way that divides PAs into two categories: PAs with a base salary only and PAs with bonuses in addition to their base salary.

  1. PA base pay is 75% salary, whereas 22% of PAs are paid hourly and 3% of PAs are paid based on their productivity. 
  2. 54% of PAs receive a salary ONLY, while 46% of PAs receive a bonus in addition to their salary
    1. 78% of those who receive bonuses say they are based on productivity
    2. 12% of those who receive bonuses say they quality improvement metrics are the prominent drive of their bonuses
  3. PAs in surgery and other specialities are earning substantially more per year than their counterparts in primary care
Table 2. This table indicates the average salary of PAs based on specialty including those with salary only and those with salary and bonuses. 

How Much Does It Cost?

The report is FREE for members, or about $500 for non-members.
$75 for current PA students (lasts entire PA program length) and pre-PA students (lasts 12-months).
$275 for currently practicing PAs (lasts 12-months).
$75 for non-practicing or retired PAs (lasts for 12-months).

To download your copy, visit

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