What Can Organizations Do to Eliminate the Gender Pay Gap in Surgery?

September 5, 2018 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​A structured compensation plan could lessen the pay gap between the genders, according to an article in the September 2018 issue of the Annals of Surgery. The authors surveyed 44 surgeons at a teaching hospital about their salaries, asking questions such as, "Do you understand your compensation plan?" and "Are you satisfied with your current compensation plan?" in 2016 and again in 2017 after a structured compensation plan was implemented. Before the new compensation plan was introduced, female surgeons earned 46% of what their male colleagues did. The structured compensation plan quickly reduced, but did not eliminate, this disparity. At the end of the study, the authors said, female surgeons were earning 72% of what their male colleagues earned. This change may have occurred because the new compensation plan increased transparency. The initial survey found that only around half of respondents (56%) understood how their compensation model was defined.

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