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This is the Average PA’s Total Compensation in the U.S. in 2018

The annual salary report for the American Academy of Physician Assistants is here!

Not much from this year’s data is too surprising, but there is more information available than the AAPA has released in year’s past. Notable findings include:

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  • The median base salary for PAs is outpacing inflation. In 2017, this number was $105,000 compared to $106,000 in 2018. That’s 1-percent growth.
  • For the first time, the report included median total compensation for PAs. In 2018, that number — which accounts for base salary, hourly wages, or some form of productivity pay — was $107,500.
  • For PAs working full-time, they worked 40 hours a week on average and made a median base of $106,000. For full-time PAs paid hourly, the wage average wage was $60. For those paid based on productivity metrics, it was $150,000.
  • For PAs working part-time (less than 32 hours per week), they worked an average of 24 hours weekly with a median base salary of $83,000 and median hourly wage of $60.
  • About half of full-time PAs reported receiving a bonus. Half of them reported it was at least $5,500.
  • The most lucrative PA specialty in 2018 was emergency medicine. Its median compensation was $116,964, which accounts for salary, hourly and productivity-paid PAs.

The salary report is especially useful for PAs who are currently job searching because it can inform your negotiations and assess whether the pay you’re offered is competitive based on your experience and location. It’s also helpful if you’re changing specialities and don’t know what’s reasonable.

“The PA workforce is strong and growing stronger every day,” said David E. Mittman, PA, DFAAPA, president and chair of the AAPA Board of Directors, in a statement. “The year-to-year, steady increase in PA salary affirms that PAs are in high demand. That is why it is so important to advance policies that will eliminate administrative burdens and allow PAs to work at the top of their education, training, and experience.”

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Today, there are more than 131,000 PAs, a number that’s expected to keep growing. By 2026, there will be 37 percent more PAs than in 2016, a much faster rate than the average for all professions.

The complete salary report also includes state- and speciality-specific data, and you can see how your pay compares to fellow PAs with a similar amount of professional experience. To see the whole report, you have to be an AAPA member. Retired members, students and AAPA fellows can view it for free.

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