RI Ranked 2nd Worst State in U.S. for Doctors
Wednesday, March 28, 2018
GoLocalProv News Team
Rhode Island is ranked as the second worst state in the country for doctors.
According to a recent study completed by WalletHub, Rhode Island is ranked 50th out of 51 states.
“Doctors are among the highest-paid and most educated professionals in the U.S. Just consider the fact that “physician” is the most popular profession within the top 1 percent of earners. And the high salary average makes sense, given the importance of their life-saving work and the struggles that come with life in the medical profession,” said WalletHub.
RI's HealthCare Problem
The ranking comes a couple of months after the state saw the closure of Memorial Hospital, which led to more than 800 employees losing their jobs.
Earlier this month, Care New England's Women & Infants announced it was closing its Woonsocket office.
“We are turning into a medical colony. On the line is local control and deciding which services will be provided and at what cost. When you lose local control, you lose local jobs. The [state] legislature has given up on meaningful health policy planning," former Rhode Island Director of Health Dr. Michael Fine told GoLocalProv.
- 44th Best – Avg. Annual Wage of Physicians (Adjusted for Cost of Living)
- 29th Best– Avg. Monthly Starting Salary of Physicians (Adjusted for Cost of Living)
- 44th Best – Hospitals per Capita
- 18th Best– Projected % of Population Aged 65 & Older by 2030
- 47th Best – Projected Physicians per Capita by 2024
- 32nd Best – Punitiveness of State Medical Board
- 48th Best– Malpractice Award Payout Amount per Capita
- 25th Best – Annual Malpractice Liability Insurance Rate
Rhode Island is ranked ahead of only New Jersey, who ranks last.
Rhode Island is ranked directly behind Hawaii and New York, who rank 48th and 49th respectively.
The best state for doctors is South Dakota.
See the Full Rankings in the Map Below
In order to identify the best states for doctors, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across two key dimensions, “Opportunity & Competition” and “Medical Environment.”
They evaluated those dimensions using 16 relevant metrics, which are listed below with their corresponding weights.
WalletHub then determined each state and the District’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its overall score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample.
Opportunity & Competition – Total Points: 70
- Physicians’ Average Annual Wage: Double Weight (~11.68 Points)
- Physicians’ Average Monthly Starting Salary: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Hospitals per Capita: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Insured Population Rate: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Employer-Based Insurance Rate: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Projected Share of Elderly Population: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Current Competition: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Share of Medical Residents Retained: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Projected Competition: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Number of CME Credits Required: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
- Presence of Interstate Medical Licensure Compact Law: Full Weight (~5.83 Points)
Medical Environment – Total Points: 30
- Quality of Public Hospital System: Full Weight (~6.00 Points)
- Physician Assistants per Capita: Full Weight (~6.00 Points)
- Punitiveness of State Medical Board: Full Weight (~6.00 Points)
- Malpractice Award Payout Amount per Capita: Full Weight (~6.00 Points)
- Annual Malpractice Liability Insurance Rate: Full Weight (~6.00 Points)
Providence does not usually do well in mergers
Remember Providence Gas, Fleet Bank, and Narragansett Electric?
Big employers, deep community involvement, and significant charitable donors — all were consumed and in each case, the number of employees left in Rhode Island by the succeeding company is a fraction of the once independent venture.
To the victor goes the spoils.
As if the Boston economy isn't good enough, and the Providence economy couldn't be more stagnant
The cityscape of Boston is littered with cranes. Boston Business Journal maps the construction projects utilizing cranes in Boston (see image) and the number of projects is staggering.
In Providence, there few construction projects and not a crane to be seen. The last thing Providence needs is for another one of its largest employers to be merged into a Boston mega-organization. The likelihood is that jobs will be lost or consolidated to Boston - basic functions like purchasing, accounting, etc. will be lost.
Harvard beats Brown in Ivy League match-up
Harvard Medical School is ranked as the #1 research-based institution in America by U.S. News and World Report.
Partners Healthcare’s academic partner is Harvard.
In contrast, Care New England’s academic affiliation is with the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Brown’s best ranking is 21st for primary care - and is ranked for research way back at #31.
One of the biggest losers in the merger could be Brown's medical school.
Care New England is RI’s 2nd largest employer, so what will It be in 2 Years?
According to the RI Department of Labor and Training, Care New England is Rhode Island’s second largest employer.
Lifespan is the largest: 12,050
Care New England: 8,500
Cities like "Meds and Eds" (the medical and educational business segments), but Providence and all of Rhode Island is likely to lose high paid, highly educated jobs as a result of this deal.
Care New England Continues to Struggle
Despite hopes that closing Memorial Hospital would solve the financially beleaguered Care New England's economic woes, new financial documents unveil that CNE continues to struggle.
Additionally, the pursuer - Partners HealthCare - is also making cuts. The Boston Globe unveiled the Partners is cutting about 100 of the company’s tech workers that their jobs were being outsourced to India to cut costs.
“Many of the employees have worked for Partners for several years, or even decades, and are struggling with the company’s decision. Almost all are coders — people who scour patients’ medical records to pinpoint billable services — and earn upward of $40 an hour. Coders in India earn a fraction of that amount, making overseas coding an attractive way for hospitals to cut costs,” wrote the Boston Globe.
Can the unions battle?
Within hours of GoLocal breaking the news of the merger, the United Nurses and Allied Professionals (UNAP) President Linda McDonald, RN, released the following statement today:
"This proposed merger has the ability to impact thousands of jobs and the quality of care in Rhode Island and should be thoroughly scrutinized. Like most Rhode Islanders, we only recently learned of this proposal but expect Care New England and Partners HealthCare to be transparent in their process and begin a conversation with our union about the effect any deal would have on our members and our patients.
Memorial Hospital provides critical care to scores of Blackstone Valley residents every year and preserving its status as a fully-functioning community hospital will be among our top priorities as this process continues to unfold.
The onus is now on Care New England, Partners HealthCare and Prime Healthcare Services to make the details of this proposal public and to do it quickly so that workers, patients and state regulators may begin asking the appropriate questions."
The nurses represents nearly 1,400 registered nurses, CNAs, ER techs, surgical techs, orderlies, endo techs, environmental employees and ancillary staff at Kent and Memorial hospitals. But, will they have any impact on the decisions?
Speaking of Lifespan - will they be forced to merge with a Boston partner?
Lifespan is having its financial challenges too. While Care New England lost $53 million last year, Lifespan's losses were $40 million. The Lifespan losses were smaller proportionately to the healthcare group's overall budget and it does not have the cash crunch that Care New England was battling.
In February, Lifespan announced it had has entered into another Boston Hospital agreement. This agreement with Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is a long term agreement with the goal of advancing cancer treatment and research. Lifespan previously entered into an agreement with New England Medical Center and that deal led to years of protracted litigation to unwind. Lifespan also ran into a legal battle with Tufts Medical Center.
Will Partners' potential arrival in the market force Lifespan to affiliate?