Orthopedic surgeons are the most highly recruited type of physician and also command one of the top salaries, according to a survey of physician-recruitment incentives by Merritt, Hawkins & Associates, Irving, Texas.
The physician-search firm, which examined incentives in almost 2,600 search assignments nationwide from April 2003 to March 2004, found that orthopedic surgeons topped the list at 210 searches, followed by radiologists at 202, cardiologists at 181 and family practice physicians at 165.
Orthopedic surgeons also commanded an average salary offer of $330,000, just below cardiologists at $336,000. Family physicians were offered less than half those figures -- $146,000.
According to the search firm's 11th annual survey of physician incentives, signing bonuses were offered in about half of all searches, up from 36% of searches in 2002-03. The average bonus was $15,500, compared with $15,000 the previous year.
Also, about 93% of employers offered to pay for continuing medical education, the survey found.