Remuneration remains the area of greatest dissatisfaction among GPs, with 45% reporting ‘maintaining income’ as one of their top challenges as a GP in 2020.5
One in four GPs (25%) are dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with their remuneration, compared to 8% of other medical specialists and 20% of hospital doctors not enrolled in training (Figure 50).
*Data representing less than 5% is not labelled
Measure: Responses to ‘Please indicate how satisfied or dissatisfied you are with each of the various aspects of your work as a doctor?’
Base: Total survey respondents, n = 3077 (GPs); n = 3578 (other specialists); n = 894 (hospital doctors not enrolled in training)
Data source: University of Melbourne, Monash University. Medicine in Australia: Balancing Employment and Life (MABEL). Data from MABEL Wave 11 survey. Melbourne: MABEL, 2020.
Some GPs, particularly in remote areas (43%), report that they are very satisfied with their remuneration.32 GPs in inner-regional areas are the next mostly likely (27%), followed by outer-regional (25%) and major cities (20%).32 This may be due to variation in cost of living across locations, as well as patient mix, and higher incentives available in rural and remote areas.
One-third (31%) of GPs working as locums report being very satisfied with their remuneration, with salaried employees the next most satisfied (27%).32 GPs who are a principal partner of their practice, or an associate, are the least likely to report they are very satisfied with their remuneration, at 20% and 18% respectively.32
GPs who report that a majority of their patients have complex health and social problems are less likely to report high rates of satisfaction with their remuneration.32
Measure: MBS item values, divided by duration of consultation (minutes)
Data source: Department of Health. MBS online: 1 May 2020 Medicare Benefits Schedule. Canberra: DoH, 2019.
Eighty-four per cent of GPs report they are paid by a proportion of their patient billings, while 9% are paid an annual salary or wage.5
GPs aged <45 years (88%) and metropolitan GPs (88%) are more likely to be paid by a proportion of billings than those aged ≥45 years (82%) and regional/rural GPs (76%).5
GPs who are practice owners are less likely to be remunerated through a proportion of billings than non-owners (Figure 52). One in four GPs who are practice owners report they are remunerated via other means, including wages, a fixed hourly or daily rate, proportion of business profit, income after expenses, or partnership distribution.5
Measure: GP responses to the question ‘Which statement best describes how you are remunerated at your main practice?’, split by GP practice ownership status
Base: Responses to survey question, n = 1782
Source: EY Sweeney, RACGP GP Survey, May 2020.
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