Physician Assistant Salary Guide and Career Outlook

The physician assistant salary is high in the United States with $92,505 per year, and NZ$140,061 ($92,133) in New Zealand, and even more in Australia with AU$167,101 ($119,274) every year. Canada offers around C$75,147 ($58,008) per year to its physician assistants, while the United Kingdom offers even less, about £29,540 ($38,826) each year.

The same professionals living in India barely make Rs 359,791 ($4,883) per year, while in South Africa the annual pay for the same job is at R115,949 ($8,128). This wage varies based on geographic location, and even though physician assistants are needed globally the compensation picture looks different around the world. Read more below on what determines these salary discrepancies.

female physician assistant examining little girl

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make per Year by Country?

Physician Assistant Salary US Canada UK Australia New Zealand India South Africa
Hourly Pay $33.39 C$20.13 ($15.53) £9.89 ($13) AU$80 ($57.07) NZ$67 ($44.04) Rs 172.976 ($2.35) R55.74 ($3.90)
Annual Pay $92,505 C$75,147 ($58,008) £29,540 ($38,826) AU$167,101 ($119,274) NZ$140,061 ($92,133) Rs 359,791 ($4,883) R115,949 ($8,128)

Physician Assistant Salary Influencing Factors

There are consistent variables that impact salaries globally. In the section below the salary by country will be detailed, the information is gathered from Payscale.com and SalaryExpert.com.

1. Location

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in the US?

In the United States, physician assistants make between $74,110 and $119,507 annually, with an hourly rate between $39.50 and $70.44. They also get hourly tips of about $5.56, and overtime pay between $39.10 and $99.49 per hour. Meanwhile, the total annual pay ranges from $76,262 to $130,564.

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in Canada?

The hourly rate for a physician assistant in Canada is between C$13.75 and C$43.56 with an hourly overtime rate of C$51.00. These professionals can expect a bonus of up to C$1,474 per year, with a total annual physician assistant salary ranging from C$49,169 to C$95,108.

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in the UK?

Physician assistants in the United Kingdom make between £7.25 and £13.91 per hour, with an overtime pay per hour of £42.50, and an annual bonus of up to £5,000. Meanwhile, the median salary ranges from £16,549 to £41,156 every year.

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in Australia?

In Australia, physician assistants make AU$80 per hour, while the annual salary is at AU$167,101. The range of salary is between AU$116,976 and AU$207,901. Meanwhile, for those who live in rural areas, the health services union recommends a stipend of AU$1,500 and AU$5,800.

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in New Zealand?

Physician assistants working in New Zealand make about NZ$140,061 per year, while the hourly pay is NZ$67. They also make bonuses of up to NZ$2,787 per year, with a total yearly salary ranging from NZ$97,970 to NZ$174,121.

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in India?

In India, these professionals can expect to earn anywhere from Rs 172,697 to Rs 923,731 every year. While the bonuses can be anywhere from Rs 10.34 to Rs 58,723 per year. They also get profit sharing of up to Rs 8,750 yearly.

How Much Does a Physician Assistant Make in South Africa?

The median physician assistant salary in South Africa rests at R115,949 each year. Professionals living here also win bonuses of up to R7,150 per year, with a total yearly pay ranging from R58,204 to R384,667.

2. Experience

In the United States, a physician assistant salary is affected more by what type of health care office they work in than their seniority. There is a steeper increase in pay from entry-level to mid-level professionals and then the salary evens out. They can expect to go from approximately $89,000 per year at an entry-level, to $100,000 every year after 5 to 10 years, and only $105,000 after 10 to 20 years of experience.

Physician assistants typically do not work in the field for more than 10-15 years as they progress to teaching or different positions in health care. However, the role of physician assistant in this nature is relatively new, and thus this may change over time.

3. Industry

The highest paying workplaces for physician assistants are:

  • Offices of Physicians – $104,020
  • General Medical and Surgical Hospitals – $106,240
  • Outpatient Care Centers – $110,510
  • Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools – $102,690

Regardless of the industry, physician assistants need to advocate for themselves. The general consensus for this field is that their bonuses are a similar proportion to physician bonuses.

Schedule & Working Hours

Physician assistants in the United States may be required to work evenings and weekends depending on their office location. For example, these professionals who work in hospitals should expect to be on-call and work nights and weekends while those who work in physician offices will work a normal workweek.

Extra hours are not a normal occurrence because the job requires them to be alert and able to solve complex problems. However, there could be events where a colleague calls off and a physician assistant has to cover the shift.

Bonuses & Benefits

The median physician assistant salary is not the only perk of the job. The table below shows the benefits that physician assistants can expect in the respective countries.

Country United States Canada United Kingdom Australia New Zealand India South Africa
Medical 80 72 8 42 77 17
Dental 62 53 8 16 23
Vision 50 42 8 11 15

Career Outlook

A physician assistant career is a rapidly growing profession regardless of the country. The countries who are newer to the profession are uncertain in how the role will evolve, but the benefit has been demonstrated through research.

In the United States, the industry is a very smart choice as medical facilities look to reduce costs but maintain the quality of care. The job is supposed to grow 37% by the year 2026. Being a physician assistant in a specialized field requires more education. However, the education is worth it as it is much shorter than a medical degree and job opportunities are plentiful. The states with the highest number of physician assistants are New York, California, Texas, Pennsylvania, and Florida.

Conclusion

As healthcare facilities globally look to reduce cost, the role of the physician assistant is becoming more and more valuable. The starting physician assistant salary is quite good in most parts of the world, but the upper limit is often dependent on the country. People will always need health care and this fact alone brings a certain level of job security. If you are interested in this field, you can also look at the surgical assistant salary.

Comments (2)

  1. K.sharon July 20, 2017
    • Roger Erickson July 20, 2017

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