A neurologist salary is based upon many factors including years of experience, type of practice and geographical location. In order to understand why a neurologist is paid so much it is important to know what they do. Neurology is the study of disorders and conditions of the nervous system that may directly affect a person’s physical and emotional health. A neurologist is the specialist that is responsible for diagnosing and treating conditions that involve the peripheral, central and autonomic nervous systems. In many cases, a primary care physician may refer his or her patient to a neurologist for a diagnosis and treatment plan. Some of the disorders that a neurologist is qualified to treat include epilepsy, sleep disorders, headaches, injuries to the brain or spinal cord and brain tumors. A neurologist does not perform any type of surgical procedure but can recommend surgery if it is determined that it would in the best interest of the patient..
Neurologist Salary and Cost of Living
The average median annual salary of a neurologist is approximately $200,000 although some make significantly more or less. Neurologists have the potential to increase their salary with yearly bonuses, profit sharing and earned commissions. On average, income from profit sharing is considerably higher for neurologists that work in a private practice than those that are employed by larger corporations.
The difference in the cost of living between each state varies widely and has a significant impact on salary. Many states such as New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Vermont, California and Hawaii have a higher cost of living; therefore earnings are typically over the average neurologist salary of $200,000. Neurologists usually earn far less in cities or states where the cost of living is lower than others.
- Entry $150,000
- Mid $200,000
- Top $250,000
The extensive amount of schooling that is required to become licensed and certified is fairly compensated through the high neurologist salary rates. Candidates must complete four years of undergraduate studies focusing on medical related studies and biology courses that can increase their chances of admittance into medical school. Once accepted into medical school, students will complete another four years of study that focuses directly on general medicine. Medical schools offer a comprehensive study of many aspects of medicine and include extensive courses in areas such as anatomy, physiology and pathology.
After completing the four years of undergraduate studies and four years of medical school, students are now ready to complete their residency in a hospital. This will allow students to apply the skills that they have learned and develop the hands-on experience that will be needed to practice competently. The first year of residency is dedicated to general medicine. After completion of first year residency, resident doctors can choose to continue their residency in a specialized area of training such as neurology. Another three years of residency is required before they can go on to take the exam that enables them to practice independently as a licensed and certified neurologist.
Industries for a Neurologist
The neurologist salary rate differs depending on the type of industry. Neurologists that work in clinics, hospitals and other medical corporations may earn less of an annual salary than those who are employed by a non-profit organization. Non-profit organizations often need services from an experienced neurologist to assist with relief efforts and humanitarian projects and are typically willing to provide a generous compensation package for their expertise; however, private practices and larger medical corporations may offer neurologists superior commission pay and company share profits.
The research industry provides an extremely lucrative neurologist salary. Neurologists that work for research companies are responsible for developing new and innovative treatments that relate to correcting different disorders of the nervous system. Neurological research is a disciplined line of work that uses various clinical and laboratory investigations to enhance the ability to efficiently treat many conditions such as autism, Alzheimer’s, stroke and brain tumors using cutting-edge technology. Research in neurology requires experienced, skilled and well-trained professionals that have the ability to accurately conduct investigations to develop innovative treatment opportunities for patients that suffer from a neurological condition.