Montana ranked best place to be a doctor in US

Montana offers the most favorable work environment for physicians in 2019, according to a new report from WalletHub that ranked all 50 states and the District of Columbia on 18 different metrics.

Wisconsin, Idaho, Minnesota and Iowa ranked Nos. 2 through 5, respectively, while Washington, D.C., and New York were considered the worst places to practice medicine.

WalletHub used data from more than a dozen sources—including the U.S. Census Bureau, CMS and the Bureau of Labor Statistics—to rank each state on a 100-point scale. Metrics related to the state’s hospital volume, population, salary (adjusted for cost of living) and competition accounted for 70 of the 100 points, while the medical environment comprised the other 30 points. Hospital safety and quality, as well as malpractice considerations, were factored into the medical environment score.

While fewer than two points separated states ranked No. 1 through 5—Montana scored 69.15 compared to Iowa’s 67.58—New York’s rating of 34.01 was more than eight points below the next-closest state (Rhode Island) and more than seven points below D.C.

Here are other notable takeaways from the report:

  • Adjusted for cost-of-living, Mississippi had the highest average annual wage for surgeons at $316,828. D.C. was last in that category at $117,763.
  • New York had the highest annual malpractice liability insurance rate at more than $40,000, which is 8.2 times higher than Nebraska’s ($4,977). New York also tied Rhode Island for the highest malpractice award payout per capita.
  • Oklahoma has 0.99 physicians per 1,000 residents, the fewest of any state. D.C. has the most with 6.2 doctors per 1,000 residents.

To read the full report, including expert comments and a description of the methodology, click here.