“If we can’t ameliorate these sex differences in compensation, we are going to have a much harder time trying to attract really qualified female physicians to go into specialties where we need them most,” Blumenthal said.
A pay gap between men and women across all professions has been widely reported. In 2015, women made 79 cents for every dollar men made, according to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. CNN reported that women won’t earn equal pay until 2059, according to the institute.
A gap between male and female doctors across a variety of institutions has also been studied—an April estimate suggested female doctors make 24 percent less—but the JAMA study’s size and specific information about factors that traditionally determine income make it unique, Blumenthal said. Jena added that using publicly available state data illustrates a way anyone can study salary differences across all fields and demographics in the future.