Background: Specialty, work effort, and gender have been shown to be associated with physicians' annual incomes; however, careful examination of the association between provider gender and annual income after correcting for other factors likely to influence income has not been conducted for anesthesiologists.
Methods: Survey responses collected throughout the 1990s from 819 actively practicing anesthesiologists and linear regression analysis were used to determine the association between provider gender and annual incomes after controlling for work effort, provider characteristics, and practice characteristics.
Results: White female anesthesiologists reported working 12% fewer annual hours than their white male counterparts. White female anesthesiologists had practiced medicine for fewer years than white males and were more likely to be employees, as opposed to having an ownership interest in the practice, but less likely to be board certified. After adjustment for work effort, provider characteristics, and practice characteristics, white females' mean annual income was 236,628 dollars, or 60,337 dollars (20%) lower than that for white males (95% confidence interval, 81,674 dollars lower to 39,001 dollars lower; P < 0.001).
Conclusions: During the 1990s, female gender was associated with lower annual incomes among anesthesiologists. These findings warrant further exploration to determine what factors might cause these gender-based income differences.