The training is long and costly, the hours are demanding, and the pressure can be tremendous, but for those who make it as surgeons — or as any of several other healthcare-related professionals — the financial rewards are impressive.
A new ranking by Careercast.com says surgeons top the list when it comes to the highest-paying jobs of 2014, with an average annual salary of $233,150. They're joined in the top 10 by 6 other healthcare-related professions: general physicians, psychiatrists, orthodontists, dentists, pharmacists and podiatrists.
And there's considerable room for growth in all 7 fields, according to the analysis, ranging from an expected 14% increase in positions for pharmacists by 2022 to an expected 23% growth in jobs for podiatrists over the same period.
Of course, those 6-figure salaries are usually accompanied by 6-figure debts, at least at first. The Association of American Medical Colleges says members of the Class of 2013 left school with a median debt of $175,000 and that 40% of grads owed $200,000 or more.
Here are the 10 best-paying positions, along with average 2014 salaries and projected growth rates over the next 8 years:
- Surgeon, $233,150, 18%
- General physician, $187,200, 18%
- Psychiatrist $179,950, 18%
- Orthodontist $149,310, 16%
- Dentist $146,340, 16%
- Petroleum engineer $130,280, 26%
- Air-traffic controller $122,530, 1%
- Pharmacist $116,670, 14%
- Podiatrist $116,440, 23%
- Attorney $113,530, 10%