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How Much Do Hospital Psychologists Make?

A hospital psychologist is a type of clinical psychologist who works mostly in a healthcare facility. Hospital psychologists evaluate, diagnose, and treat patients who struggle with mental health problems. They may work with hospital patients one-on-one or in groups. Hospitals psychologists frequently work with hospital patients who have been admitted for mental and emotional issues. They also work with medical and surgical patients who need to learn to handle their illness or injury. (Chron.com)

As a branch of clinical psychology, hospital psychology offers comprehensive and continuing mental and behavioral health care for individual patients and families. Hospital psychologists also offer consultive services to social service agencies and communities, as well as training, education, and research-based practice. (APA.org)

Key knowledge that is critical to practice as a hospital psychologist:

  • Understand psychopathology and interventions and diagnostic considerations
  • Mental health problems across the human lifespan, based on an excellent grasp of psychopathology
  • The ability to asses and synthesize data from personality tests with other standardized assessment measures
  • Consult with other health and behavioral healthcare professionals in the cases of hospital patients with critical psychopathology, violence, and suicidal tendencies

Becoming a hospital psychologist requires a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, which is a significant time and financial endeavor. Is it worth it for the salary you will earn? The detailed wage information below should help you to make your decision.

Hospital Psychologist Salary Information

Good sources of salary information for hospital psychologists include the following:

Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

BLS data shows the median salary for clinical psychologists is $76,900. However, the median salary for all psychologists is higher at $79,000. For the top 10% of earners, the wage is $129,000. Earning your doctoral degree in clinical psychology and working in a hospital will allow you to make a higher salary. (BLS.gov)

Median wages for psychologists depend on the industry, as well:

  • Government: $96,400
  • Hospitals: $86,500
  • Ambulatory healthcare services: $79,100
  • Elementary and secondary schools: $75,800

Some professionals who work as hospital psychologists may also seek employment as college professors. BLS data shows the median salary for psychology professors is $76,700. (BLS.gov). At state schools, the median salary for college professors is $81,200, and at private schools, it is $78,500.

Payscale.com

Payscale.com reports the average salary for clinical psychologists and hospital psychologists is $77,500 per year, with a range between $49,000 and $111,000. (Payscale.com). Salaries increase with work experience: a hospital psychologist with one year of experience earns $66,000, while 20 years of experience provides a $92,000 salary.

The average salary of $77,500 can be more or less depending on the city:

  • Washington DC: +9%
  • New York City: +2%
  • Boston: +1%
  • San Diego: -2%
  • Chicago: -5%
  • Los Angeles: -6%

Ziprecruiter.com

This website reports the average salary for hospital psychologists is $101,300, with a range between $34,500 and $166,500. Most hospital psychologists earn a salary between $81,500 and $113,000. (Ziprecruiter.com)

Glassdoor.com

Glassdoor.com reports the average salary for hospital psychologists is $105,600 per year with a range between $74,000 and $126,000. (Glassdoor.com)

Job Outlook for Hospital Psychologists

The job outlook for hospital psychologists is excellent. BLS reports a 14% increase in psychology jobs through 2028, which is much faster than average. There will be much more demand for clinical psychologist services in both private practices and hospitals. More Americans are living longer and need treatment for their mental health problems.

Also, there is a better understanding today of the link between physical and mental health. It is common for hospital patients with diseases and illnesses to receive psychological counseling while they are in treatment. (BLS.gov)

Job demand for college professors will rise by 11% through 2028, which is faster than average. More students will attend colleges and universities in the next 10 years. There will be more students earning master’s degrees and Ph.D.s in psychology as there is more need for psychological services across America. (BLS.gov)

Summary

Working in hospital psychology provides the opportunity to make a high salary. There is increasing demand for all kinds of psychologists as more Americans want help with their mental health issues. More hospitals offer psychological services for admitted patients. It has been shown that treating a patient’s mental and physical health simultaneously leads to better outcomes and lower costs.

With a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, you can easily make a wage of $100,000 per year in a hospital and possibly more in private practice. With only a master’s degree, the salary will be considerably lower, and getting the best work opportunities will be difficult.

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