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How much do Physician Assistants make?

How much do physician assistants make? That is the question that students are likely asking themselves if they are seriously pondering a career as a physician assistant. It turns out that being employed as a physician assistant is actually more than just getting a good job in the healthcare field. It is also a job in the healthcare field that guarantees people working as physician assistants a superior salary over other types of jobs in the healthcare field. The reason for this can be traced back to a number of reasons. For example, physician assistants take care of many of the same duties and tasks that regular doctors do. Because of this, they are continually in great demand across many different healthcare facilities. A physician assistant possesses specialized capabilities for which other healthcare workers simply have not been qualified or trained.

Students looking at entering this field must be mindful of the fact that the salary they are going to earn as a physician assistant is not going to be the same everywhere. The salary will change based upon various factors. The factors that must be reviewed in terms of how much students can earn as physician assistants are really quite straightforward. What follows is an analysis of what those who are considering a future as physician assistants can reasonably expect to make with this career decision. As students weigh both the pros and the cons of becoming physician assistants, they will increasingly find that the benefits of this occupation are not strictly limited to money.

Based upon additional factors that are going to be discussed in further detail below, how much a physician assistant can earn is between $50,000 and $80,000 each year. There are, of course, going to be cases where a physician assistant pulls in a little bit less or a little bit more than this range. However, this range is actually quite accurate based on the information from So just how much do physician assistants make? Read on to find out.

Further Factors to Regard

Specialization – The greater the knowledge that is specialized that a physician assistant possesses, the greater the amount of money such a physician assistant can ask for when being hired. An example of a specialization is specific knowhow in, say, the field of cancer. It is interesting to note that at some higher levels of expertise within this occupation, a physician assistant might even be able to literally write his own paycheck since organizations and corporations will be duking it out for his services.

Geography – Those physician assistants who work in areas that are rural are not going to be earning as much money as those physician assistants who are employed in urban areas that have a higher cost of living. When students ask themselves, “How much do physician assistants make?” they should always keep in their minds that geography will massively impact the size of their salary in this field. At the same time, students are cautioned against presuming that they will never get a high-paying physician assistant job in a rural setting.

As is plain to see, there is a lot to think about when students think about how much they will pull in as physician assistants. Some of the things that impact the earnings of a person in this occupation are geography, experience and specialization. To look at this in another perspective, though, even what would be considered the most “low-paying” physician assistant job would still qualify as a pretty high salary by the definition of most people! Students should never lose sight of this either.


So the big question is how much do physician assistants make? Well, to answer that, we have to regard what the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says on the subject. Based on May 2008 figures, a physician assistant can earn an average yearly salary of $81,230. The average percentage of presently working physician assistants earns in the range of $68,210 to $97,070. Now, the lower 10 percent of physician assistants makes about $51,360, and the higher 10 percent of physician assistants might make up to about $110,240 each year.

The average yearly salaries of physician assistants employed at various establishments are as follows:

  • Hospitals: $84,550
  • Educational Institutions: $74,200
  • Government Offices: $78,200
  • Physician Offices and Clinics: $80,440
  • Outpatient Centers and Clinics: $84,390

How much do physician assistants make? Their earnings are also based upon the hours worked by the physician assistant. The American Academy of Physician Assistants in their 2008 Census Report found that physician assistants employed full-time make $85,710 on a yearly basis. Physician assistants who work at an entry-level position make around $74,470.

Besides what they make, physician assistants have the right to receive payment for state licensing fees, professional liability insurance, credential fees and registration fees with the DEA or the Drug Enforcement Administration.

The physician assistants who worked in a full-time, clinical practice got an average income of $85,710. First-year graduates made an average, yearly income of $74,470. This information was gleaned from The American Academy of Physician Assistants’ 2008 Census Report. The years of experience, specialization, geography and practice setting are all contributing factors to income. Employers of physician assistants frequently pay for their credentialing fees, registration fees with the DEA, professional liability insurance and state licensing fees.

Physician assistants can even leave credits that they can utilize for sickness recovery or for vacation. Some choose early retirement at age 50, but most will keep working until 65 so that they can get even more money as part of their benefits when they retire.

How much do physician assistants make? The above information answered this intriguing question and then some. Generally, physician assistants can expect to make between $50,000 and $80,000 per year, though this range is not set in stone. Based on factors like experience, geography and specialization, physician assistants can make a little bit more or a little bit less than the money in this range.