Guide to OBGYN Salaries by Specialty and Region

You may think about becoming an obstetrician/gynecology physician so you can take care of women’s health care, provide prenatal care and help deliver babies.

According to the Medscape Physician Compensation Report 2022, 76 percent of OB/GYN doctors say they would choose this same specialty if they did it again. This number shows that a large portion in this field are satisfied with their profession, and you have the potential to be as well.

An OBGYN salary may be part of what physicians like about this field, as it offers a good salary that compensates you well for your work. In addition, this is an area of medicine that may often be personally rewarding.

You’re likely wondering about the salary for OB GYN physicians, as that plays a role in whether to get into this physician specialty. This article provides average salaries for this type of primary care physician, with in-depth information that shows you how and why there is a range of salary considerations within this field.

We also help you understand how you can increase your salary once you’re working in this role, as well as how you can make the most of your money as a physician and protect your income.


Average OBGYN Salary

Working as an OBGYN nets a median salary of $354,885 nationwide, according to a 2021 report on compensation and production by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA). When we look at the median, we’re seeing where 50 percent of salaries fall below this number and 50 percent sit above it. MGMA data showed that within the country, these doctors had a salary range of $240,000 in the 10th percentile to $540,632 in the 90th percentile.

The salary of this specialty falls within the middle on the Medscape report. This source lists the OB/GYN salary as $336,000 on average, with the top of the list being plastic surgery physicians who make $576,000 and the bottom being public health and preventive medicine physicians who make $243,000 per year. These numbers include bonus and profit-sharing contributions in addition to the base salary.

Various sources give differing average salaries for this occupation. This is generally due to variations in research data, years studied, factors included in salary and the like. It’s helpful to look at a variety of sources and consider the data they use to gain a better idea of a typical OB/GYN salary. Here are more data sources to compare:

  • Payscale gives $236,454 as the average base salary for this role in the U.S.
  • Salary.com says the median obstetrics/gynecology physician salary is $300,600.
  • ZipRecruiter provides the number of $263,329 as the average OB/GYN annual salary in the country.
  • U.S. News and World Report says this type of physician makes a median of $208,000, although its information was from 2020.
  • Indeed says the average salary is $125,951, although it is focusing on base salary without any additional compensation factored in.
  • Comparably lists $252,008 as the obstetrician/gynecologist salary.

Related: The 2022 Physician Compensation Report


Factors That Affect OBGYN Salary

The following are top factors that influence salary in this field.

Demand

The Medscape report shows that OB/GYN and other family medicine salaries have gone up by eight percent. In addition, by 2030, it’s anticipated that there will be more demand than supply for OB/GYNs, according to a National Center for Health Workforce Analysis. This means there will be more people needing OB/GYNs than OB/GYNs in the role. This dynamic could present an opportunity to gain a higher salary by being a type of doctor that is in demand. In addition, this source explains that the Northeast region of the country has an adequate number of these physicians and is also expected to by 2030, while the other regions in the country have deficits and are expected to continue to have them. This indicates the possibility for higher incomes in the West, South and Midwest, which have more demand. This is supported by location data below.

Gender

You may find a difference in terms of gender as an OB/GYN physician. Medscape shows that in primary care, which includes gynecology and obstetrics, women made $228,000 compared to men’s $285,000. The percentage of women in the OB/GYN specialty is 57 percent.

Total Compensation

Medscape gives $49,000 as the average incentive bonus for OB/GYN physicians, while Comparably says the average bonus for this role is $19,873. Payscale says the bonus for these professionals has gone up to $81,000, and that profit sharing has been reported to be as much as $178,000.

Salary.com shows that the total compensation can increase to $407,826 from a base salary of $300,600 when you factor in a bonus and the value of benefits. This site even gives a bonus on the lower end, at $12,610, so the potential could be greater based on the higher bonuses listed on other sites.

Experience Level

Payscale shows that as an entry level OB/GYN, you could expect to make 12 percent less than the average salary. Then, in your early career, you would make nine percent less. Those in their late career make 16 percent more, while experienced OB/GYNs make 21 percent more.

Work Location

The area where you live and type of practice generally make a difference in terms of salary, including for OBGYNs. Nonetheless, it’s always important to consider the cost of living in an area, as a higher salary won’t go as far in an area with a high cost of living.

MGMA data shows that physicians in this specialty earn the most in the southern U.S., with a median salary of $377,223. The next highest is the Midwest, at $368,320. The East and West are comparable, as the western U.S. has a median salary of $339,960 for this occupation, while the eastern U.S. falls at $339,400.

That said, the size of the area makes a difference, although it may not always be better in a larger area. MGMA shows that the highest income for this group is metro areas under 250,000 in population, which have a median salary for OB/GYN physicians of $394,765. The next is non-metro areas of 20,000 or more at $389,731. Then, it’s metro areas of 250,000 to one million at $367,147, non-metro areas of 2,500 to 19,999 at $355,383 and metro areas of more than one million at $338,322. The particular state, region and city will also make a difference in terms of salary expectations.

Related: How Moving Can Help Physicians Pay Off Student Loans

Further, the type of practice where you work plays a role in OBGYN salary. This type of primary care physician can expect to earn the most in a hospital, with a median income of $364,440. After that is other majority owned facilities at $337,154 and finally physician-owned facilities at $331,385. In this case, single- and multi-specialty practices are comparable, as the first pays a median of $356,497 while the latter pays $354,639.

Skills

Focused skills within this physician specialty may impact overall salary. Payscale lists the varying salaries by skill like this:

  • Gynecology: $252,528
  • Surgery: $242,237
  • Labor and Delivery: $239,397
  • Obstetrics/Gynecology: $238,014
  • Obstetrics: $206,265

Salary Based on Subspecialty

You can also expect any subspecialty to impact your salary. For example, you can compare the following subspecialties to the average OBGYN salary given on the respective site:


Average Loan Debt for OBGYN Physicians

Student Loan Planner covers student loan debt for OB/GYN physicians. It is similar to other types of physicians, as the debt incurred happens during medical school, while specializing then happens during paid residencies and fellowships. This source notes that 24 percent of medical school students have more than $300,000 in student loan debt, 52 percent have more than $200,000 and 60 percent have more than $150,000.

Once you become an OB/GYN, you then have to pay off this student loan debt over time using your salary. This takes up a portion of your salary, yet it also provides a way to maximize your salary. This is true because if you can reduce the interest on your debt, you’re able to spend less of your money on debt and utilize more of your salary. We offer special discount rates for physicians to re-finance their student debt. Check to see if you can save.

Read More: The Full Breakdown to Medical School Student Loans


How to Increase Salary in OBGYN

Once you’re more aware of the factors that impact an OBGYN salary, you have more power to increase that salary.

One method for increasing salary is to hire PAs, NPs or other assistants to help you with less intense tasks and administrative work. The Medscape report shows that OB/GYN doctors spend 14.6 hours on paperwork and administration each week. While this is better than the top of the list at 19.8 hours for infectious disease doctors, it is still a significant amount of time and more than the bottom of the list of anesthesiology doctors at 10 hours.

Another way is to consider relocating or switching employers. A move to a region that has more demand and higher salaries could potentially give you a compensation boost. And switching to a hospital, if that’s not where you practice already, could potentially increase your income.

If you have the capacity, you could increase your workload by working locum tenens for other physicians. In obstetrics, there may be many occasions when a person’s physician is unable to attend the birth, in which case you could fill in to make extra money. Using assistants could free up more time that you could spend on patients instead of paperwork and other tasks.

You could consider a slightly different specialty. For example, maternal and fetal medicine physicians and gynecological oncologists had a higher salary on Salary.com compared to OB/GYNs.

In addition, make sure to negotiate a bonus to maximize your salary – signing, relocation or production. You can see from various sources that bonuses for this role are significant and would greatly increase total compensation compared to the base salary for the role.


Secure Your OB GYN Salary

Once you’re making a good salary as an OB/GYN physician, it’s important to protect it. One way to do this is to have malpractice insurance and make sure you have enough coverage. In general, your state or employer will require this type of insurance. Nonetheless, you should check on your type of coverage and coverage limits, as it protects you in case an injury or death happens from your gynecology or obstetrics care.

In addition, you can manage your salary, build wealth and protect your assets with these steps:

  • Proper retirement planning, whether it’s through an employer or not
  • Tax planning to make the most of your income
  • Working with a financial planner on the best investments and money management
  • Protecting your income by having disability insurance in case anything happens to you

OB/GYN Salary Negotiations

Negotiating your OBGYN salary is one of the best ways to make the most money throughout your career. Negotiations are essential for good salaries because they help you command a good base salary that reflects your appropriate experience and skills, and it also helps you ensure the highest total compensation through factors like bonuses, profit sharing and benefits. You should be negotiating at the beginning of your career and when anything changes, such as added skills or increased experience.

To negotiate well, you should have an educated understanding of salaries within the field and how they vary by factors like experience level, skills and training. You should expect to be fairly compensated according to these factors rather than demanding a higher income than fits your current situation. Many people find negotiating challenging, and it makes sense to hire a professional to review and negotiate your contract, ensuring you’re making as much as you can. Contact us to start a contract review.


Protect Your OB GYN Salary

Negotiating and managing your income well helps you have the highest salary, but now you need to protect it. The best way to protect your OBGYN salary is through disability insurance.

If something happens that impacts your ability to carry out your work in gynecology and obstetrics, disability of insurance can compensate you so you continue to earn.

Yet, not all policies are created equal and it is important that you don’t simply rely on a group plan from your employer.

Group insurance requires you to be disabled and incapable of working in any occupation to receive full benefits. It will also limit the amount of benefits available.

In contrast, individual plans with a true own-occupation definition of disability will pay full benefits even if you are able to work in another occupation such as consulting, teaching, research or administration. By planning ahead with an own-occupation disability insurance policy, you protect your salary and assets. Get your free disability quote quickly and easily.

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