Average provider age by medical specialty

With possible healthcare provider shortages and many professionals facing burnout, organizations are also confronting an aging workforce.

Full retirement age as defined by the Social Security Administration is 67 years old, however, the average retirement age is about 64 years old. In addition, psychologists, dentists and physicians and surgeons have some of the highest rates of workers over the age of 65.

What is the average age of healthcare providers?

We analyzed over 800,000 healthcare providers tracked in the Definitive Healthcare PhysicianView product with a reported birth year. The average age of these providers is 53.2 years old as of 2021.

The following tables lists the highest and lowest average ages of providers by their primary specialty.

Highest average provider age by medical specialty

Rank Primary specialty Average age Number of providers analyzed
1 Cardiology - Cardiac Surgery 58 1,288
2 General Practice 58 2,140
3 Psychiatry - Forensic 58 101
4 Psychology - Clinical Neuropsychologist 58 108
5 Addiction Medicine 57 599
6 Radiology - Nuclear Medicine 57 620
7 Adolescent Medicine 56 844
8 Occupational Medicine 56 537
9 Preventive Medicine 56 584
10 Psychiatry - Geriatric Psychiatry 56 280
11 Surgery - Thoracic Surgery 56 2,611
12 Allergy/Immunology 55 4,279
13 Cardiology - Cardiologist 55 23,087
14 Obstetrics/Gynecology - Maternal & Fetal Medicine 55 359
15 Ophthalmology 55 18,387
16 Surgery - Neurosurgery 55 4,695
17 Surgery - Orthopedic Surgery 55 20,742
18 Surgery - Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery 55 6,326
19 Urology 55 9,672
20 Endocrinology - Reproductive 54 804
21 Otolaryngology 54 9,362
22 Psychiatry 54 38,305

Fig. 1. Data is from the Definitive Healthcare PhysicianView product and sourced from proprietary research, the NPI Registry and Physician Compare. Only specialties with at least 100 providers reporting a birth year are included. Data accurate as of January 2022.

Which provider specialties have the highest average age?

Cardiac surgery, general practice, forensic psychiatry and clinical neuropsychologist specialties have the highest average provider age of 58 years old. Addiction medicine and nuclear medicine radiologists have the next highest average age, 57 years old. 65 specialties have an average provider age of 50 years or older.

Lowest average provider age by medical specialty

Rank Primary specialty Average age Number of providers analyzed
60 Allergy/Immunology - Pediatric 50 165
61 Cardiology - Cardiac Electrophysiology 50 2,466
62 Otolaryngology - Pediatric 50 150
63 Pediatric Medicine 50 55,183
64 Sleep Medicine 50 768
65 Surgery - Surgical Oncology 50 1,145
66 Cardiology - Pediatric Cardiologist 49 875
67 Emergency Medicine 49 46,767
68 Endocrinology - Pediatric 49 923
69 Gastroenterology - Pediatric 49 1,051
70 Oncology - Pediatric Hematology/Oncology 49 1,516
71 Pain Management 49 2,619
72 Radiology - Interventional Radiology 49 2,076
73 Anesthesiology - Pediatric Anesthesiologist 48 248
74 Critical Care (Intensivists) 48 5,029
75 Critical Care (Intensivists) - Pediatric 48 1,535
76 Hospice and Palliative Care 48 2,049
77 Emergency Medicine - Pediatric 47 1,533
78 Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine 47 245
79 Rheumatology - Pediatric 47 236
80 Sports Medicine 46 1,813
81 Hospitalist 43 25,797

Fig. 2 Data is from the Definitive Healthcare PhysicianView product and sourced from proprietary research, the NPI Registry and Physician Compare. Only specialties with at least 100 providers reporting a birth year are included. Data accurate as of January 2022.

Which provider specialties have the lowest average age?

The average age for hospitalists is 43 years old, the lowest on the list of specialties. Sports medicine providers have an average age of 46 years old.

Healthcare Insights are developed with healthcare commercial intelligence from the Definitive Healthcare platform. Want even more insights? Start a free trial now and get access to the latest healthcare commercial intelligence on hospitals, physicians, and other healthcare providers.

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