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salaries for epidemiologists (PhD vs. Master's)

nibzq

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Feb 14, 2008
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  1. Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
    Hey guys,

    I noticed from the Dept. of Labor's Bureau of Labor Stats Website that the average (I think it was a mean) was somewhere in the range of 60-65k. I was wondering whether or not you guys would be able to offer some more insight into this...do you believe this is reliable measure or estimation?......I am sure this figure incorporates epidemiologists of all education levels (possibly including bachelor's level individuals)......I've seen some other income predictors which show that while PhD epidemiologists earn more, their salaries are still well below the 100k mark....for example, in academics, the salaries range in the 60-80k area.......obviously no one goes into public health for the money but I am concerned about being able to pay off student debt.....what do you guys think about income potential???? my passion is for epid but finances are always a consideration and are making me consider other lucrative health fields (I'm sure some of you are in this boat as well, ie. considering med, pharm, dent, etc).....
     

    epid1234

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    Dec 12, 2007
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    1. Non-Student
      I think there are many options for epidemiologists. The academic & government route doesn't command a large salary but I plan to apply for fellowships. Some government agencies have loan repayment programs. Many epidemiologists working at the federal level get their loans repaid by their respective institutions. Obviously, a fellowship is very competitive and I may not secure one but it's something to consider. Also, some epidemiologists go on to work for banks & pharmaceutical companies & that's very lucrative (although rare & then you'd really not be serving the "public" anymore).

      Just my two cents
       

      WantAnMPH

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        I've read that epi is at least the best paid "subspecialty" of public health (excluding related specialties like MHAs). So, you'll be doing better than most other people in your health department. Also, keep in mind that a huge number of epidemiologists lack any kind of specialized training (the exact number is available from the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists, www.cste.org, I think), so with an MPH in the area, you'll have a better shot at making the higher end of income ranges and of advancing within your department.
         
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        nibzq

        Full Member
        10+ Year Member
        Feb 14, 2008
        11
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        1. Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
          I've read that epi is at least the best paid "subspecialty" of public health (excluding related specialties like MHAs). So, you'll be doing better than most other people in your health department. Also, keep in mind that a huge number of epidemiologists lack any kind of specialized training (the exact number is available from the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists, www.cste.org, I think), so with an MPH in the area, you'll have a better shot at making the higher end of income ranges and of advancing within your department.

          You both raise good points...WantAnMPH.....I'm not sure what you mean by an MPH in the area (do you mean in the area as in epidemiology, or "area" as in physical geographic location?)......The figures I saw showed Biostatisticians make more than epidemiologists,.......what do you mean by specialized training btw? do you mean they lack a degree specifically in epidemiology (ex. MS or MPH) or are you referring to some training beyond just this?
           

          WantAnMPH

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            Sorry, meant "the area" as in epidemiology.

            By "specialized training" I mean any kind of training in epi. Even an undergrad degree in stats. Many epidemiologists have no related (undergrad, masters, or phd) training.

            As far as salaries go...remember that biostat and epi are very closely related. Some schools have even left them as one department. Epi is certainly a more common specialty in local and state health, but it wouldn't surprise me if many epidemiologists are training as biostatisticians and vice versa.
             
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