The Alabama Department of Labor has ranked occupations based on their projected growth, average annual job openings, and average annual salaries. Its findings conclude that physician assistants are among Alabama’s “Hot 40 In-Demand Occupations” from 2012-2022.
As of May 2014, physician assistants in Alabama earned an average annual salary of $89,890 and an average hourly wage of $43.22.
According to the United States Department of Labor, there were 430 physician assistants employed throughout Alabama in 2012. Government projections expect this number to jump to 580 by 2022, which indicates an impressive employment growth rate of 36% during this ten-year span. Current and future physician assistants can look forward to approximately 20 annual job opening through 2022.
More Experience Equals Greater Pay for Physician Assistants in AL
One of the major factors driving physician assistant salaries in Alabama is the level of experience an employee brings to the table. It fact, previous experience is such a crucial factor in salary expectations that some of the most seasoned physician assistants in the state regularly earn more than twice that of their entry-level colleagues.
For example, the federal government reported that novice physician assistants with entry-level positions in Alabama collected an average annual salary of $49,600 and an average hourly wage of $23.83 in 2014. However, more accomplished physician assistants with several years of experience under their belt were treated to a much higher average annual salary of $92,500 and an average hourly wage of $44.48.
Although a $92,000 annual paycheck is certainly a comfortable salary, expert physician assistants were the biggest salary winners in that year, as they were awarded an average annual salary of $120,700 and an average hourly wage $58.01.
Physician assistants that want to strive for better salaries are encouraged to explore ways they can facilitate career advancement and become more valuable to their employers. Many top-earning physician assistants continue to complete postgraduate degrees while simultaneously amassing clinical knowledge and experience. By doing this, they prove to employers their worthiness to handle greater responsibility, which often translates to promotions to supervisory roles that offer high salaries.
Physician Assistant Salaries in Alabama by Region
Experience level is not the only determining factor when it comes to salary expectations for physician assistants in Alabama. For instance, in 2014 the United States Department of Labor published the following salary averages for physician assistants in the following regions:
- Southwest nonmetropolitan area: $103,950
- Tuscaloosa: $100,100
- Birmingham-Hoover: $86,860
- Mobile: $80,210
The data table below provides a more comprehensive look at regional salaries for physician assistants throughout Alabama (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014):