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Radiologist demand down this year

by Loren Bonner, DOTmed News Online Editor | September 09, 2013
According to the latest review from the national health care consulting and recruitment firm, Merritt Hawkins, primary care physicians remain at the top of hospital and health facilities' wish lists for 2013. Demand for radiologists, however, decreased — a direct reversal from previous years (2001, 2002 and 2003) where radiology topped the Merritt Hawkins list of the most requested specialties. Anesthesiology, formerly a top recruiting assignment, also did not make the list this year.

For the first time in 20 years, Merritt Hawkins also found that demand has increased for non-physician practitioners, like physician assistants and nurse practitioners.

This shift may come as no surprise. Built into the Affordable Care Act are incentives that attract aspiring physicians into the field of primary care, which is currently in short supply but will be an important force when millions more gain health coverage next year.

Still, even with this shift in demand, salaries remain the same. According to Medscape's 2013 Physician Compensation Report, radiology was one of the top three highest paid specialties, with primary care remaining at the bottom of the pay scale for doctors.

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