Are Residents Paid Enough?

The website Medscape wondered how medical residents were faring, so it asked them.

To compile its Residents Salary & Debt Report 2014, Medscape used an online survey. More than 1,200 residents representing 25 specialties responded between June 20 and July 7, the website reported in an email.

The bottom line: The average resident is paid $55,300. It’s a bit less in the Great Lakes states — Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio — where the average is $54,000.

But here’s the rub: 36 percent of those residents said they owed more than $200,000 in medical school debt. Another 22 percent owed between $100,000 and $200,000. Those numbers didn’t surprise me, but I was mildly surprised to see that 25 percent of residents reported no debt.

Male residents, on average, make $56,000, compared with $54,000 for female residents. But when asked if they were satisfied with their pay, 57 percent of the women said yes; only 48 percent of the men said yes.

There’s a conclusion to be reached from that, but I’m not sure what it is.

All of this makes me wonder about the pay, debt and satisfaction of medical residents in the Northland. I’m not going to do an online survey, but if any residents would be willing to talk — and to be quoted — I’d be interested in talking to you.

You can respond to this post, email me at, or call me at (218) 624-2906.

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