The Salary for a Neurosurgeon Resident

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Neurosurgery residencies are long and rigorous, and pay modest wages.
Neurosurgery residencies are long and rigorous, and pay modest wages. (Image: Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

Most medical schools establish salaries — usually called “stipends” — for all post-doctoral residents regardless of specialty or subspecialty. Those minimum guidelines may be exceeded by individual hospitals where residents work. Some schools have slightly separate pay scales for individual medical specialties, but the differences generally are negligible. Aside from base stipend or salary, schools also provide medical and other benefits. Schools also don’t distinguish between residency and fellowship status, providing post-graduate year, or PGY, salaries to accommodate both residents and fellows.

Harvard

The Harvard Neurology Residency Program is affiliated with several hospitals in the greater Boston area. At Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, Newton-Wellesley Hospital and Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, the pay scale for PGY-1 is $54,220, for PGY-2 it’s $56,462, third-year pay is $57,834, the PGY-4 salary is $60,563, fifth-year pay is $62,919, the PGY-6 stipend is $67,677, year-seven pay is $70,890 annually and the PGY-8 salary is $74,460. These figures are for the 2010-11 academic year.

Temple

For the 2011-12 academic year, the Temple University School of Medicine provides a first-year stipend of $49.337.60, a second-year salary of $51,064.00, third-year pay of $52,436.80 a year, a fourth-year salary of $54,288.00, a fifth-year stipend of $55,515.20, sixth-year pay of $57,740.80 and a seventh-year — or chief resident — salary of $60,028.80 a year.

State University of New York

In 2010-11, Upstate Medical University of the State University of New York, in Syracuse, paid a first-year neurosurgery resident salary of $48,152. PGY-2 pay was $51,766 a year, the third-year salary was $54,168, PGY-4 paid $56,380 a year, the fifth-year stipend was $58,988, and the PGY-6 pay rate was $61,394 a year. Seventh-year chief residents received an additional $500, or a salary of $61,894.

University of Rochester Medical Center

The University of Rochester Medical Center, for the 2010-11 academic year, provided a PGY-1 salary of $47,250. Second-year residents received $49,019 a year, PGY-3 residents made a salary of $51,742, fourth-year students made a stipend of $53,562, the PGY-5 salary was $55,384, sixth-year salaries were $57,203 and the PGY-7 pay rate was $58,510 annually.

Walter Reed Army Medical Center

Walter Reed Army Medical Center, operated by the U.S. Army Medical Department, is in Washington, D.C. Neurosurgery residents must become commissioned Army officers and are paid a starting salary equivalent to that of a captain — pay grade O-3 — which for 2011 is $3,711.90 a month, or $44,543 a year. Raises are based on years of service and rank.

Mayo Clinic

The Mayo Clinic has locations in Minnesota, Florida and Arizona. It has a seven-year neurosurgery residency program, but also offers a three-year fellowship for further specialization, such as in spinal surgery. Its resident pay scale reflects that rigorous program, listing 10 years of post-graduate residency stipends. For 2010-11, the first year paid a salary of $47,259. In the second year, the salary was $49,151. Year three paid $51,186, year four paid a stipend of $53,325, and the fifth year had a salary of $55,626. The sixth-year stipend was $57,741 a year, the seventh-year pay rate was $59,662 annually, and year eight paid a salary of $61,965. The ninth-year stipend was $64,200, and for the 10th year the salary was $66,415.

Neurosurgeon Salary

According to a physician compensation survey conducted by the American Medical Group Association, the median annual salary for a U.S. neurosurgeon in 2009 was $592,811.

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