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How much do doctors make in Canada?

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Are you a medical student thinking about choosing your specialty? Maybe you’re in residency wondering where to practise. Or maybe you’re just curious about the average income of a physician in Canada.

Take me to the income tables

This article will list average physician earnings for family medicine and 17 medical and surgical specialties in 10 provinces. But first, let’s define some terms.

How are physicians paid?

In Canada, physicians can be paid in the following ways:

  • Fee for service: The physician bills their provincial ministry of health a specified amount for each type of visit or procedure.
  • Alternative payment plans: Under these arrangements, the province pays physicians directly using a model other than fee for service, such as salary, sessional (payment on an hourly or daily basis), capitation (payment based on the number of patients on a doctor’s roster), or block funding (in which practice groups are paid for services beyond the clinical, like teaching, research or administration).

In the tables below, we show the “gross clinical payment per full-time equivalent.”

Gross clinical payment: This is the amount that the government pays the physician, whether it is fee for service or an alternative payment plan. From this amount, the self-employed physician will need to pay their overhead expenses (e.g., rent, staff salaries, equipment, insurance) and other deductions. The remaining is the physician’s net clinical revenue, from which they will pay personal taxes and/or corporate taxes if their medical practice is incorporated.

Here is a simplified illustration, using an unincorporated physician:

Gross clinical payment

$400,000

Overhead

-$150,000

Net clinical revenue

$250,000

Personal income tax

-$100,000

Take-home pay

$150,000

Full-time equivalent: Not all physicians work full-time, and part-time earnings can distort the calculation of average income. The “full-time equivalent” metric aims to produce statistics that are comparable between full-time and part-time, across jurisdictions and across specialties.

Tables of physician income in Canada

The figures in the following tables are from the Canadian Institute for Health Information, published in October 2021 based on 2019–2020 data.1

CIHI provides information for family medicine and a select number of medical and surgical specialties.

Note that because of the varying payment methods across Canada, there are limitations to the comparability of this physician payment information. Anesthesia data, in fact, is excluded from service counts because of concerns about the comparability of certain jurisdictions.

An asterisk (*) indicates that data were suppressed to protect confidentiality where there are four or fewer physicians; n/a indicates not applicable and/or there were no physicians for this specialty in the particular province. In general, there were not enough data for Yukon, Northwest Territories or Nunavut.

 

 

By province — Average physician gross annual income

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$448,098

Saskatchewan

$418,060

Manitoba

$417,413

Quebec

$415,071

New Brunswick

$403,677

British Columbia

$389,716

Prince Edward Island

$377,211

Nova Scotia

$357,318

Ontario

$356,508

Newfoundland

$355,523

Average

$387,756

 

 

 

By specialty — Average physician gross annual income

Specialty

Annual income

Ophthalmology

$879,858

Thoracic/cardiovascular surgery

$670,652

Neurosurgery

$602,130

Surgical specialists

$573,586

Urology

$572,164

General surgery

$539,707

Cardiology

$531,746

Otolaryngology

$523,053

Plastic surgery

$514,086

Orthopedic surgery

$507,807

Gastroenterology

$493,060

Obstetrics/gynecology

$472,548

Internal medicine

$464,759

Dermatology

$457,191

Medical specialists

$404,328

Pediatrics

$361,623

Neurology

$356,913

Physical medicine

$341,008

Family medicine

$331,615

Psychiatry

$318,984

 

 

Cardiology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$643,215

British Columbia

$599,541

Saskatchewan

$576,559

Manitoba

$548,207

Quebec

$514,500

Ontario

$508,233

New Brunswick

$485,973

Newfoundland

$478,812

Nova Scotia

$357,312

Prince Edward Island

n/a

Average

$531,746

 

 

Dermatology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$666,555

Manitoba

$636,129

New Brunswick

$581,224

Nova Scotia

$580,236

Newfoundland

$515,679

British Columbia

$505,756

Saskatchewan

$463,633

Quebec

$448,877

Ontario

$361,097

Prince Edward Island

*

Average

$457,191

 

 

Family medicine — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$393,248

Quebec

$369,185

Manitoba

$364,825

New Brunswick

$341,161

Saskatchewan

$322,026

Prince Edward Island

$317,968

Nova Scotia

$312,420

British Columbia

$308,399

Ontario

$303,656

Newfoundland

$290,388

Average

$331,615

 

 

Gastroenterology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Saskatchewan

$544,297

British Columbia

$542,929

Alberta

$537,539

Manitoba

$521,276

New Brunswick

$500,828

Quebec

$486,144

Ontario

$478,715

Newfoundland

$435,780

Nova Scotia

$350,724

Prince Edward Island

n/a

Average

$493,060

 

 

General surgery — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$637,393

Manitoba

$628,103

Quebec

$611,821

Saskatchewan

$587,697

New Brunswick

$556,302

Prince Edward Island

$552,027

British Columbia

$537,065

Nova Scotia

$511,467

Ontario

$481,451

Newfoundland

$468,256

Average

$539,707

 

 

Internal medicine — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$546,288

British Columbia

$507,457

Saskatchewan

$488,589

Manitoba

$482,233

Quebec

$470,028

Prince Edward Island

$447,909

Ontario

$441,783

New Brunswick

$438,960

Newfoundland

$422,537

Nova Scotia

$365,418

Average

$464,759

The figures for internal medicine include all subspecialties of internal medicine, including cardiology and gastroenterology which are also reported as individual specialties.

 

 

 

Neurology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

British Columbia

$456,129

Alberta

$412,966

Newfoundland

$379,965

Manitoba

$363,673

Prince Edward Island

$359,155

Saskatchewan

$358,399

Ontario

$342,627

Quebec

$334,388

New Brunswick

$311,167

Nova Scotia

$288,633

Average

$356,913

 

 

Neurosurgery — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Saskatchewan

$700,258

Ontario

$697,647

British Columbia

$652,253

Newfoundland

$586,906

Manitoba

$533,423

Quebec

$529,882

New Brunswick

$443,023

Nova Scotia

$347,957

Alberta

n/a

Prince Edward Island

n/a

Average

$602,130

 

                          

Obstetrics/gynecology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

British Columbia

$568,742

Alberta

$540,451

Saskatchewan

$539,522

New Brunswick

$538,434

Prince Edward Island

$520,185

Manitoba

$509,233

Quebec

$463,067

Nova Scotia

$450,795

Ontario

$436,002

Newfoundland

$379,067

Average

$472,548

 

 

Ophthalmology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$1,302,765

Manitoba

$1,162,421

Prince Edward Island

$1,103,068

Saskatchewan

$1,069,210

Newfoundland

$969,021

British Columbia

$962,062

Nova Scotia

$907,615

Quebec

$806,676

New Brunswick

$805,655

Ontario

$747,346

Average

$879,858

 

 

Orthopedic surgery — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Newfoundland

$604,053

Alberta

$595,058

Saskatchewan

$570,139

Manitoba

$567,600

Prince Edward Island

$526,246

British Columbia

$518,090

Quebec

$514,266

Ontario

$473,882

Nova Scotia

$464,793

New Brunswick

$461,365

Average

$507,807

 

 

Otolaryngology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$683,991

Saskatchewan

$561,689

Manitoba

$551,799

New Brunswick

$537,585

Nova Scotia

$533,296

Ontario

$518,968

British Columbia

$512,028

Newfoundland

$490,704

Quebec

$469,263

Prince Edward Island

*

Average

$523,053

 

 

Pediatrics — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

British Columbia

$420,660

Alberta

$418,964

New Brunswick

$412,370

Saskatchewan

$392,600

Quebec

$389,287

Newfoundland

$378,609

Nova Scotia

$354,401

Manitoba

$342,411

Prince Edward Island

$337,984

Ontario

$327,477

Average

$361,623

 

 

Physical medicine — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Saskatchewan

$416,393

Manitoba

$413,298

British Columbia

$394,457

Alberta

$373,556

New Brunswick

$348,825

Quebec

$326,258

Ontario

$319,091

Nova Scotia

$234,609

Newfoundland

*

Prince Edward Island

*

Average

$341,008

 

 

Plastic surgery — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$678,847

Manitoba

$668,551

New Brunswick

$626,131

Saskatchewan

$592,275

Quebec

$541,786

Nova Scotia

$529,928

British Columbia

$523,778

Newfoundland

$499,776

Ontario

$442,706

Prince Edward Island

*

Average

$514,086

 

 

Psychiatry — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

New Brunswick

$380,303

Prince Edward Island

$368,343

Saskatchewan

$360,632

Quebec

$359,352

Manitoba

$345,302

Alberta

$335,040

British Columbia

$316,395

Nova Scotia

$293,706

Newfoundland

$282,642

Ontario

$281,312

Average

$318,984

 

 

Thoracic/cardiovascular surgery — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Alberta

$889,030

Saskatchewan

$762,962

Manitoba

$754,625

Ontario

$710,681

British Columbia

$634,493

Quebec

$626,372

Newfoundland

$583,493

Nova Scotia

$545,757

New Brunswick

$540,196

Prince Edward Island

n/a

Average

$670,652

 

 

Urology — Gross annual income by province

Province

Annual income

Manitoba

$730,839

Alberta

$701,111

New Brunswick

$670,287

Saskatchewan

$644,047

British Columbia

$615,056

Nova Scotia

$606,020

Newfoundland

$585,763

Ontario

$537,580

Quebec

$527,298

Prince Edward Island

*

Average

$572,164

1 How to find this information: Go to https://www.cihi.ca/en/physicians-in-canadaScroll down to “National Physician Database” and download “Data tables (ZIP).” Go to the file titled “NPDB-historical-payments-data-tables-1999-2019-en-web.xlsx”; see Table D2 (“Average payments”), click on Row 3 (“Type of average payment”) and select “Average gross clinical payment per full-time-equivalent physician” from the dropdown.

The above information should not be construed as offering specific financial, investment, foreign or domestic taxation, legal, accounting or similar professional advice, nor is it intended to replace the advice of independent tax, accounting or legal professionals.