Neuropsychiatry is a branch of medicine that integrates the study of neurologic and psychiatric disorders, according to the American Neuropsychiatric Association. Neuropsychiatrists usually treat people with mental disorders that stem from neurological or brain malfunctions, including strokes, epilepsy, Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis and obsessive compulsive disorder. During examinations, they study patients' motor functions, coordination, reflexes and posture to make their diagnoses. Most neuropsychiatrists work in physicians' offices, hospitals and colleges and universities. Their salaries vary depending on experience, employer and where they work.
Neuropsychiatrists earned average annual salaries of $152,000 as of 2014, according to the Indeed job site. Salaries were highest overall in the South, where neuropsychiatrists averaged the lowest salaries of $136,000 a year in Louisiana and the highest of $191,000 in Washington, D.C. Annual salaries in the Northeast ranged from an average of $135,000 in Maine to $184,000 in New York. Neuropsychiatrists averaged $94,000 a year in Hawaii and $163,000 in California -- the lowest and highest salaries in the West. In the Midwest, their average salaries ranged from $112,000 a year in Nebraska to $173,000 in Illinois.
Comparison to Psychiatrists
Although neuropsychiatry is a subspecialty of psychiatry, it's a relatively new subspecialty that was instituted in 2006 by the United Council for Neurologic Subspecialties, according to the Journal of Neuropsychiatry. This is possibly why psychiatrists earn more on average than neuropsychiatrists. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported average salaries of $182,660 a year for psychiatrists in 2013.
Neuropsychiatrists are required to obtain four-year bachelor's degrees in any major, followed by four-year medical degrees. They must then take and pass the U.S. Medical Licensing Examination to obtain their state licenses. After earning their licenses, they must complete a residency program, which takes three or four years. To advance in their field, they can test and become certified through the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and qualify for higher-paying research jobs.
Aging Population Drives Growth
The BLS expects the number of jobs for physicians and surgeons, including all psychiatrists, to increase 18 percent from 2012 to 2022, which is faster than the 11 percent projected growth rate for all occupations. Increases in population among elderly Americans because of the large baby boom population will spur demand for medical care. Seniors are more prone to conditions such as dementia and strokes, which should help drive demand for neuropsychiatrists.