Unexplained Widening Gender Gap In Doctors' Starting Salaries

George Doyle|Getty ImagesRedTracker| Researchers aren’t clear why starting salaries for new physicians leaving New York State residency programs have a widening gender gap. TIME reports that in 1999, the salary difference was only $3,600 but in 2008 had widened to $16,819.

Women doctors are pursuing higher-paying specialized fields of medicine. The percentage of women taking lower paying primary care positions fell from 49% in 1999 to 34% in 2008.

Researchers say it’s possible that women are trading benefits for money, but that reality hasn’t been quantified. The problem could be tied to women losing ground, as they are in political representation.