A new study published in Postgraduate Medical Journal on Medicare pay disparity showed female providers were reimbursed thousands of dollars less than male colleagues.
The authors analyzed over three million publicly available Medicare reimbursement claims for 2012 and compared the reimbursements received by male and female healthcare providers in 13 medical specialties.
Adjustments on were made on reimbursement totals based on how hard providers worked, how productive each provider was and their level of experience. A reimbursement differential was calculated between male and female providers by primary medical specialty.
Findings showed female providers were reimbursed $18,677.23 less than male providers in 2012 and were paid less across 13 specialties. Nephrology highlighted the largest statistically significant gender differential of $16,688.96, followed by rheumatology ($15,405.54) and pulmonary medicine ($11,017.79).
Of the 13 specialties, only hematology and medical oncology had differentials that were not statistically significant.
“After adjustment for how hard a physician works, his/her years of experience and his/her productivity, female healthcare providers are still reimbursed less than male providers. Using objective, non-survey data will provide a more accurate understanding of this reimbursement inequity and perhaps lead the medical profession (as a whole) towards a solution that can reverse this decades-old injustice,” the authors wrote in their conclusion.