WalletHub: R.I. second-worst state for doctors

RHODE ISLAND was ranked the second-worst state for doctors, according to a study released March 20 by WalletHub.

PROVIDENCE – Rhode Island is the second-worst state for doctors, ranking only above Hawaii, according to a study released March 20 by WalletHub.

The Ocean State’s ranking dropped since last year, when it ranked 40th in the nation in the annual study’s look at the best states for doctors.

The financial website based in Miami, Fla., compared the 50 states and Washington, D.C., across two key dimensions, opportunity and competition” and “medical environment.” Both dimensions were evaluated using 19 relevant metrics, with opportunity and competition points weighing more heavily in the final score for each state.

The metrics include physicians’ average annual wage, physicians’ average monthly starting salary, hospitals per capita, insured population rate, employer-based insurance rate, projected share of elderly population, current competition, share of medical residents retained, projected competition, number of CME credits required, presence of interstate medical licensure compact law and quality of public hospital system. Also, hospital safety, presence of nationally accredited health departments, physician assistants per capita, punitiveness of state medical board, malpractice award payout amount per capita, annual malpractice liability insurance rate and physician burnout.

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Data showed Rhode Island scored 44th for opportunity and competition and 45th for medical environment, with a total score of 41.8. Hawaii, ranked last overall, scored 51st for opportunity and competition and 41st for medical environment with a total score of 41.7.

Montana was ranked the best state for doctors, coming in 11th for opportunity and competition and 4th for medical environment for a total score of 73.4. South Dakota, Idaho, Wisconsin and Minnesota rounded out the top five.

New Hampshire was highest-ranked New England state at 29th.The Granite State scored 20th for opportunity and competition and 13th for medical environment for a total score of 54.1.

Maine was 31st, Connecticut was 33rd, Vermont was 38th and Massachusetts was 45th.

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