Map: The best (and worst) states for doctors, according to WalletHub

For physicians, Montana is the best state in which to practice medicine while New York is the worst, according to a new analysis from WalletHub.

About the list

WalletHub ranked the 50 states and Washington, D.C., based on 18 weighted metrics grouped into two categories: Opportunity and competition, worth a up to 70 points, and medical environment, worth up to 30 points.

The Opportunity and competition category consisted of 11 weighted metrics including:

  • Physician average annual wage (11.67 points);
  • Average monthly starting salary (5.83 points);
  • Hospitals per capita (5.83 points); and
  • Insured population rate (5.83 points).

The Medical environment category consisted of seven metrics each weighted 4.29 points, including:

  • Quality of public hospital system;
  • Percentage of nationally accredited health department; and
  • Punitiveness of the state medical board.

Each metric was scored on a 0 to 100-point scale, with 0 representing the least favorable conditions for a provider. WalletHub then used those scores to calculate each state's weighted average across all metrics and determine a final score.

The best states for doctors:

Montana was named the No. 1 state in which to practice medicine, followed by:

  1. Wisconsin;
  2. Idaho;
  3. Minnesota;
  4. Iowa;
  5. South Dakota;
  6. Kansas;
  7. Nebraska;
  8. Mississippi; and
  9. North Dakota.

The worst states for doctors

The 10 lowest-ranked states in which to practice medicine, according to WalletHub, are:

  1. New York;
  2. Washington, D.C.;
  3. Rhode Island;
  4. New Jersey;
  5. Connecticut;
  6. Hawaii;
  7. Delaware;
  8. Maryland;
  9. Massachusetts; and
  10. Vermont.

WalletHub also released rankings on several individual metrics. For instance, South Dakota ranked first for average annual wage for physicians (adjusted for cost of living) while Washington, D.C. ranked last.

Maine had the least punitive state medical board, while Delaware had the most punitive, and Nebraska had the least costly annual malpractice liability insurance while New York had the most costly (Kiernan, WalletHub, 3/25; Forum News Service/Grand Forks Herald, 3/25).

Win the war for physician talent

Physician recruitment is not a new problem. But generational changes and rising expectations for physician performance make competition for physician talent feel increasingly intense today.

Though recruitment challenges are deep-rooted, organizations can take steps to ensure their physician recruiting process is as effective as possible. Read the report to learn the four requirements for successful recruitment in today’s competitive market.

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