According to a recent report from KaufmanHall, employed physician productivity and revenue for Q2 and Q3 2021 surpassed 2020 and 2019 performance levels, with the median compensation for a full-time equivalent (FTE) physician hitting a new high. However, since Q1 2021, related expenses, due in part to rising drug and medical supply costs, continued to climb above pre-pandemic levels.

Key positive findings in the report from Q3 2021 compared to Q3 2020 include:

  • Investment/Subsidy per Physician FTE rose to $231,654, an increase of 9.8%
  • Physician wRVUs per FTE increased by 9.4%
  • Net Revenue per Physician FTE jumped to $660,762, an increase of 11.4%
  • Total Direct Expense per Physician FTE rose to $914,045, an increase of 13.2%

Data in the October 2021 Physician Flash Report was based on a survey of approximately 100,000 employed physicians and advanced practice providers across more than 100 specialties. The data indicate that nationwide employed physicians saw significant revenue gains for the second consecutive quarter in 2021.

Despite physician productivity rising above pre-pandemic levels for a second consecutive quarter, growth was flat in Q3 2021 versus Q2 2021. Due to physician expenses climbing above pre-pandemic levels for the third consecutive quarter, the level of investment needed to supplement physician revenues also increased.

In a Medscape analysis of the report, several key negative findings were identified, including:

  • Practice expenses increased faster than revenues, with the median subsidy that health systems paid to their own practices hitting $231,654 per FTE physician on an annualized basis.
  • While primary care specialties saw revenue and productivity gains across the board, surgical specialties saw a decline.

The sample of physicians in the report represents data from across the United States. Physicians of all types, from family medicine physicians to neurosurgeons, and from single physician practices to large academic physician groups were represented. Advanced statistical techniques were used to standardize the data, identify and handle outliers, and ensure statistical soundness prior to inclusion in the final report.