Physician Employment Up by 32% at Hospitals Over Past Decade
Physician employment has grown by 32 percent over the past 10 years. Hospitals today are employing roughly 212,000 physicians — or 20 percent of the practicing physician workforce — according to the AHA Hospital Statistics 2012 Edition.
Employment varies by region, with 56 percent of New England physicians reportedly employed or under contract compared to 29 percent in the West South Central Region. This variation is largely due to state corporate practice of medicine laws, such as those in Texas and California, which prohibit the employment of physicians.
Hospitals' use of intensivists and hospitalists is also on the rise. In 2007, 50.4 percent of hospital respondents had hospitalists at their facility and 20.7 had intensivists. Now those figures have risen to 59.8 percent and 29.7 percent, respectively. Again, the New England region and West North Central region were at opposite ends of the spectrum. Roughly 85 percent of New England hospitals used hospitalists and 55.2 percent used intensivists in 2010, while only 32 percent and 11.5 percent of West North Central hospitals did the same.
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