Doctors, rejoice. According to the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor of Statistics, seven of the top 10 highest paying jobs are in the medical field.
The 2016 ranking included doctors, dentists and business CEOs. All 10 occupations require long, unpredictable hours and years of expensive training.
Here are the seven medical careers that made the cut:
Family and General Practitioner
Annual Salary: $192,120
Education: Four years of medical school, three-year residency.
Practitioners diagnose, treat and prevent common injuries and illnesses faced by the general population. Family practitioners also assist in referrals if a patient’s case is specialized.
“In an age of increasing specialization, there is a greater demand for generalists like family practitioners and internists,” said Bob Bregant, a board member of the National Association of Physician Recruiters.
Annual Salary: $193,680
Education: Four years of medical school, psychiatry residency, multiyear fellowship.
Psychiatrists are tasked with the diagnosis and treatment of mental illnesses. The position itself is flexible; some work at hospitals and clinics, while some host their own 9 to 5 practice. Many experts are predicting a growth in psychiatrist demand.
“The population is getting older, and I think that people are recognizing that [post-traumatic stress disorder] is something significant, and there is a huge need for people in that field,” said Wanda Parker, the secretary-treasurer at the National Association of Physician Recruiters.
Annual Salary: $196,520
Education: Four years of medical school, four-year residency.
Internists work to prevent, diagnose and treat adult diseases. They are often found at urgent care centers, hospitals or at their own medical practice. Internists do not treat patients under the age of 18, but can pursue pediatric training if needed.
According to Parker, internists do “a little bit of everything” and require a person that is “very in tune with a patient.”
Physician and Surgeon
Annual Salary: $197,700
Education: Four years of medical school, surgical residency.
The surgeon’s role in the medical field has evolved in recent years, as sub-specialty surgeries are rising in popularity. Surgeons are either found in a hospital staff or at a practice with primary care doctors.
While most surgeries are scheduled ahead of time, emergency surgeries are just as common.
“They’re the ones most prone to having something happen in the middle of the night or on a weekend,” said Bregant.
Annual Salary: $222,400
Education: Four years of medical school, four-year residency, optional fellowships.
OB-GYNs focus on women’s health, especially diseases and functions that affect the reproductive system. General medical knowledge is also required, as women tend to use gynecologists as primary care physicians.
Expect odd working hours, depending on when patients go into labor.
“These are people whose schedules are constantly interrupted,” said Parker, “And when they’re called, they go.”
Annual Salary: $247,520
Education: Four years of medical school, general surgical internship, four-year residency, optional fellowship dependent on specialty.
Specialty surgeons focus on the treatment of illnesses and injuries through invasive or non-invasive surgical methods. This career also requires the most amount of training; the average surgeon starts working in their mid-30s. They are often found in medical groups and hospitals.
“It’s also more of a stand-alone specialty,” Parker added, “It’s a specialty for someone who’s an entrepreneurial person, a very confident person.”
Annual Salary: $258,100
Education: Four years of medical school, four-year residency, optional fellowship dependent on specialty.
The top-paying career is ironically the least interactive. Most patients don’t talk to their anesthesiologist until moments before surgery.
Anesthesiologists provide personalized medical care to patients including airway management, pain control provisions and post-operative management.
Typically, this career involves working for multiple hospitals at a time. This may be due to the USA’s shortage of anesthesiologists.
“The business model for many anesthesiologists is a little different… often, they sign on with a medical group of anesthesiologists, and that group, in turn, contracts with four or five different hospitals,” Parker said.
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