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A psychopathologist studies mental illness that has a physical cause, such as a disease, injury or drugs. It is typically a specialization of psychiatry, although psychologists may also be psychopathologists. The salaries of psychopathologists are generally similar to that of other psychiatrists. A psychopathologist employed by a hospital or other organization typically earns a straight salary, whereas psychopathologists in private practice receive an income from their patients' fees.
A medical specialty such as psychopathology dramatically increases a physician's earning potential. The 2008 Physician Compensation and Production Survey from the Medical Group Management Association shows that the median annual income for positions in primary care was $186,044, while physicians in a medical specialty such as psychopathology had a median annual income of $339,738. The median income of a physician in private practice is generally higher than that of a salaried position. The factors that affect the income of a physician in private practice include amount of experience, hours worked and professional reputation.
The average salary for psychiatrists in the United States was $167,610 per year in 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The middle half of these psychiatrists had an average salary of $164,220 per year. The bottom 10 percent of psychiatrists earned average salaries of $65,530 per year and the bottom fourth of psychiatrists earned $112,950 per year.
The highest level of employment for psychiatrists was in physicians' offices, where psychiatrists had an average salary of $159,300 per year. Psychiatric hospitals had the next-highest level of employment for psychiatrists, who earned an average salary of $166,440 per year. Outpatient care centers paid their psychiatrists an average of $188,210 per year. Psychiatrists in hospitals made an average of $164,050 per year. Psychiatrists working in local government earned an average salary of $180,230 per year.
New York employed the greatest number of psychiatrists, where they earned an average salary of $161,660 per year. Rhode Island was the next-largest employer of psychiatrists, where the average annual salary was $177,390 per year. The District of Columbia paid its psychiatrists $121,840 per year on average. Psychiatrists in Vermont earned an average salary of $118,470 per year. Psychiatrists in Connecticut had an average annual salary of $200,900 per year.