Invasive cardiologists among top revenue-generating specialists


Physicians continue to be the major drivers of hospital revenue, and invasive cardiologists were among the top revenue-generating specialists in 2018, according to a new survey by physician search firm Merritt Hawkins.

Revenue generated by cardiologists for hospitals

“The value of physician care is not only related to the quality of patient outcomes,” Travis Singleton, the company’s executive vice president, wrote in a statement. “Physicians continue to drive the financial health and viability of hospitals, even in a health care system that is evolving towards value-based payments.”

Invasive cardiologists generated an average of $3.48 million for their affiliated hospitals last year, second only to cardiovascular surgeons’ $3.70 million among the 19 specialties included in the survey. Average revenue generated by noninvasive cardiologists in 2018 came in at $2.31 million – that’s an 83% increase over the 3 years since the survey was last conducted, compared with the 42% rise seen by the invasive cardiologists over that time, Merritt Hawkins reported.

Specialist physicians as a group averaged over $2.45 million in revenue in 2018, compared with $2.13 million for primary care physicians, which “suggests that emerging value-based delivery models have yet to inhibit the revenue generating power of physician specialists,” the report said. Average revenue for all physicians in the survey was almost $2.38 million, an increase of 52% since Merritt Hawkins’ last survey.

The survey was conducted from October to December 2018 and is based on responses from 62 chief financial officers or other financial managers who represented 93 hospitals. Responses from smaller hospitals (0-99 beds) were “somewhat overrepresented in the survey” relative to their number nationwide, Merritt Hawkins said.

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