Oregon Physicians Boost State's Economy

New study: Oregon physicians support 133,511 jobs, generate $22.4 billion in economic activity

February 6, 2018—Physicians add opportunity, growth, and prosperity to the Oregon economy by creating 133,511 jobs and generating $22.4 billion in economic activity, according to a new report, The Economic Impact of Physicians in Oregon, released today by the Oregon Medical Association (OMA) and the American Medical Association (AMA).

"The study findings demonstrate the positive financial influence physicians exert here in Oregon," said Elizabeth Powers, MD, an Oregon-based family physician and OMA member. "While my primary goal is the physical and mental wellbeing of my patients, I am proud that my work also has the effect of contributing to the economic wellbeing of my community."

Dr. Powers practices in Enterprise, Ore. and Joseph, Ore., in the northeast of the state, and has led both an independent Rural Health Clinic and, more recently, a nonprofit Community Health Center. She is knowledgeable about workforce issues affecting physicians in rural areas of the state.

The new study quantifies the economic boost that nearly 10,500 Oregon physicians provided to the state's economy, producing a ripple effect that is felt statewide. The study measures physicians' impact using four key economic indicators:

  • Jobs: Physicians support 133,511 jobs in Oregon, 12.8 for each physician, on average.
  • Economic activity: Physicians generate $22.4 billion in economic output, comprising 10.3 percent of the Oregon economy. Each physician generates $2.1 million for the state's economy, on average.
  • Wages and benefits: Physicians contribute $12.3 billion in total wages and benefits paid to workers across Oregon, empowering a high-quality, sustainable workforce. Each physician contributes $1.2 million to workers' wages and benefits, on average.
  • State and local tax revenue: Physicians' contribution to the Oregon economy generates $900.1 million in state and local tax revenue for their communities-translating to $86,452 for each physician, on average-enabling community investments to be made.

"The positive impact of physicians extends beyond safeguarding the health and welfare of their patients," said AMA President David O. Barbe, MD, MHA. "The Economic Impact Study illustrates that our physicians are woven into their local communities and have a vital role in fueling the state's economy by creating jobs, purchasing goods and services, and supporting public services through the tax revenue they generate."

The report found that every dollar applied to physician services in Oregon supports an additional $1.96 in other business activity. An additional 7.3 jobs, above and beyond the clinical and administrative personnel that work inside the physician practices, are supported for each one million dollars of revenue generated by a physician's practice.

 In addition, Oregon physicians generate more economic output, produce more jobs, and pay more in wages and benefits than higher education, nursing, and community care facilities, legal services, and home health.

The full report The Economic Impact of Physicians in Oregon is available online.

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