A typical physician assistant salary will vary depending on what state you live in and your specialty. The average physician assistant salary is $118,000 a year but can vary $10,000-$20,000 higher or lower depending on the specialty.
Below I detail the best and worst paying states as well as the amounts you may expect by physician assistant specialty.
Best & Worst Paying States
According to BLS, the top three highest paid states for a physician assistant are:
- Connecticut ($125,000),
- Washington ($123,000); and
- Alaska ($122,000)
The lowest three states for physician assistants are:
- Mississippi ($81,000),
- Louisiana ($86,000); and
- Tennessee ($87,000)
Physician Assistant Salary By Specialty & Financial Breakdown
Below we detail each physician assistant salary by specialty. The salary is based on data from a survey performed by the NCCP as well as data from physician assistants that manage their financial plans using FitBUX’s financial planning technology.
In addition to salary, we provide information on how this salary impacts physician assistants financially. We do so by using our technology to calculate each specialties FitBUX Score as well as the long-term impact of the higher salary on net wealth. In short the higher the FitBUX Score and net wealth the better!
The Score and net wealth projections below are examples to help you understand your financial prospects. If you need help personalizing your plan become a free member of FitBUX and schedule a call with a FitBUX Coach.
Cardiothoracic & Vascular Surgery
Cardio & Vascular Surgery physician assistants make $132k per year. This specialty involves various procedures to the chest such as heart transplants or heart valve surgery.
If you go this route you could have a FitBUX score of 882 by age 45. You’d also have approximately a net wealth that was 34% more than the average health care worker by retirement.
A physician assistant working in the Dermatology specialty makes approximately $126k per year. This specialty involves specializing in the treatment of skin, hair, and nails. They deal with various health related items such as burning off warts to analyzing suspicious moles that could be cancerous.
If you were to be a Dermatologist, your FitBUX score could be a 761 by age 45. You’d also have a net wealth approximately 30% more than the average health care worker by retirement.
A physician assistant working in the emergency medicine specialty makes about $123k per year. This specialty involves diagnosing and treating patients with critical illnesses or injuries. The work a lot with trauma victims.
If you specialize in emergency medicine, your FitBUX score could be a 690 by age 45. You’d also have a net wealth approximately 27% more than the average health care worker by retirement.
A physician assistant working in the neurosurgery specialty makes about $122k per year. This specialty deals with with on the nervous system. Specifically, they focus on the brain and spinal cord.
If you specialize in neurosurgery, your FitBUX score could be a 665 by age 45. You’d also have a net wealth approximately 26% more than the average health care worker by retirement.
Lastly, a physician assistant working in the surgical subspecialties makes about $120k per year. This specialty is very broad. However, some examples are those that specialize in hand surgery, sports medicine, oncology, and spinal surgery.
If you specialize in surgical subspecialties, your FitBUX score could be a 617 by age 45. You’d also have a net wealth approximately 24% more than the average health care worker by retirement.
Planning Is Important
As you saw above, physician assistant’s salary can range drastically based on specialty but also by the state you live in. Therefore, before you start school you should research the cheapest schools to go to. You should also have a good plan in place for how you are going to pay for physician assistant school.
By David Hughes