Jobs, Training, and Salary for Family and General Practitioners

Family and general practitioners are the primary doctors for common diseases and injuries. They need to complete medical school and additional training and can then get jobs in medical clinics and hospitals and earn a substantial salary.

In the United States, family and general practitioners need to complete an undergraduate degree of 4 years and then 4 more years of medical school. After medical school, a residency is generally required to get a medical license for work in family medicine or as a general practitioner. This residency training program for general and family practitioners usually lasts at least years.

Once a medical license is obtained, the doctor can then get a job as a fully licensed physician in a variety of settings. This dramatically increases income potential, as residents do get paid but at a much lower wage than licensed physicians. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 97,820 family and general practitioners in May of 2010.

In some cases, a doctor may have his own family practice. In other cases, the doctor may be a partner in a medical clinic or an affiliated employee. Still other family and general practitioners get salaried jobs on the staff of hospitals or outpatient care centers.

While most family or general practitioners work in general hospitals or medical clinics, some work in psychiatric or substance-abuse hospitals or other specialized hospitals.

The salary for family and general practitioners is very high. In May of 2010, the median salary was $163,510. States with the most doctors in this type of practice were California, Pennsylvania, Texas, Illinois, and Florida.

For those who can qualify for medical school, job prospects are great for doctors seeking to specialize in family medicine or have a general practice. Employment positions for all physicians were expected to increase by 22 percent from 2008 to 2018.


Bureau of Labor Statistics: Career Information for Family and General Practitioners

Bureau of Labor Statistics: Career Information for Physicians/Medical Doctors

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