A complete guide to paid physician surveys

Global opportunities for paid physician surveys are popular discussions and interest points among physicians around the world. Paid online surveys are nothing new. In fact, they’ve been in existence since the Internet launched. However, the majority of online survey companies pay mere cents to answer a few questions. 

In the past, paid surveys for physicians that offered lucrative compensation were often too good to be true. This is no longer the case. Medical surveys for cash are quickly growing in popularity, as credible companies urgently seek the unique expertise of medical professionals—and are willing to pay for it.

Here’s how paid medical surveys work and how physicians can elevate their incomes by offering their expertise.

What are paid physician surveys?

A physician survey is like any other survey, but they are aimed specifically at doctors who have expertise in certain fields and conditions. It is an opportunity for clinicians to highlight the issues that are important to them and their patients. And at the same time, surveys arm companies with valuable medical insights and accurate information that allow them to strategize based on what’s actually happening on the frontlines of medicine.

Sermo survey

These insights can pay exceptionally well, depending on the physician’s specialty. For example, oncology is in high demand, with rough estimates revealing genuine medical surveys for money paying up to hundreds of dollars per hour for a participant’s time.

Surveys vary in terms of how much they pay and how long they take to complete. Doctors’ surveys may take anywhere from a few minutes to complete or up to 60 minutes.

Generally, the more time a physicians’ survey takes to complete, the more it pays.

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Sermo members earned $25 million+ in 2021

Benefits of taking paid physician surveys

There are multiple benefits of taking part in medical surveys for physicians. Here are just a few of the top benefits for survey participants.

Supplemental income for physicians

Some Sermo members have individually made over $15K on surveys alone. Surveys allow physicians to generate an additional stream of income. Depending on the demand at the time, some fields will pay more than others. Dermatology and neurology are especially lucrative fields, and these surveys pay significant amounts to qualified experts who participate. 

Physicians use their earned money to treat themselves or their families to something special, pay off student loans or other bills or even buy gifts for their patients. Surveys can be taken during off-hours and breaks, or whenever is most convenient for the physician. For this reason, the flexibility of medical surveys are a good fit for a doctor’s busy schedule. 

Play a role in the latest medical developments

Never lose sight of the fact that these surveys contribute to the latest medical developments. By offering real-world insights into various specialist fields, physicians play an important role in future medical advancements and progress.

Physician surveys for money, therefore, also make a difference to the lives of clinicians and patients— as well as to the future of medicine.

No additional IRS reporting requirements

All US-based income must be reported to the IRS, but participants are blinded from the industry source for each survey. Due to this blindness, paid physicians surveys do not fall under the reporting requirements of the Sunshine Act.

Market research participation is excluded from these laws, which is why earning income via a physician survey will not lead to any additional reporting burdens in the United States.

I deposit my earnings into a separate investment account. It’s only a little each time but with repetition and returns it’s turning out nicely.

Sermo Member
US Emergency Medicien Physician

Different types of surveys

There are two types of research that are most commonly used for paid physician surveys: quantitative and qualitative.

Quantitative and Qualitative Surveys


As the name suggests, quantitative research focuses on data and numbers, summarizing physicians’ responses to questions. This often includes statistical analysis that either proves or disproves a hypothesis. A quantitative survey gathers data to use in testing, so you won’t be asked to provide in-depth answers or opinions.  


Qualitative surveys are focused on gathering more abstract information, such as opinions or motivations. The goal of qualitative surveys tends to be focused on gaining insights into people, rather than numerical data. Be prepared to answer “why” and “how” questions and offer more in-depth answers than you would on a quantitative survey. 

How to get started with Sermo

Sermo is not only a hub of legitimate medical surveys for cash; it is a platform to talk about all things medical. With more than 1,000,000 physicians and counting, it is completely free to sign up.

Collectively, members at Sermo received more than $20 million in the last year from taking medical surveys.

Physicians may build their profile, or they may opt to join anonymously. To create an account, simply add your name, email address, and country of practice. You’ll then go through the verification process before your account is fully activated.

After creating an account, physicians are free to provide as much or as little information about themselves as they please.

Questions and concerns about paid surveys for physicians

Naturally, clinicians are skeptical about participating in surveys for money. After all, there are worries over whether it is too good to be true. This section addresses some of the most common questions and concerns about paid surveys for physicians.

Are paid physician surveys legitimate?

This is the most common question regarding paid physician surveys. Countless medical panels are claiming to offer surveys for physicians. While most are legitimate, payouts vary wildly. Many such panels are no more than online survey routers, which provide access to third-party surveys. You can trust the surveys that are presented to you on Sermo, as they have been vetted and verified. 

In 2021 alone, Sermo partnered with 500+ of the world’s most trusted companies in the healthcare space ranging from pharmaceutical manufacturers to healthcare consultancies, including 17 of the top 25 manufacturers globally.

Do paid surveys count towards CME hours?

Medical surveys are industry-sponsored and may relate to theoretical or unapproved products. For this reason, physicians generally cannot claim category 1 CME hours for time spent on filling in online surveys for cash.

While some experts claim category 2 CME credit, this is something that should be checked via your credentialing body.

How many surveys can I qualify for?

In short, paid surveys are not an option for quitting your day job. The majority of physicians will be eligible for a few surveys per year. It largely depends on the specialty of the survey taker.

However, don’t let this discourage you. These surveys exist for a reason: your expertise and knowledge are valuable and worth sharing and can add to your income.

Survey providers have strict screening criteria to ensure they reach exactly who they want to answer their questions.

How do participants get paid for taking a survey?

Payment is straightforward, and typically involves a bank check, Amazon gift card, Mastercard debit card, donations to charities, or local payment apps such as PayPal.

Are there opportunities for HCPs who aren’t physicians?

Yes, sign up at MNOW. MNOW is the world’s leading online community of practicing physician assistants, nurses, dentists, optometrists, pharmacists, veterinarians, and other healthcare professionals who participate in online medical market research studies. All surveys are directed toward the appropriate specialty.

The bottom line 

Taking a physicians’ survey to earn extra cash is an excellent way of creating an additional income stream—while contributing to the future of medicine. Physicians often work long hours, and finding downtime can be a challenge. But the beauty of surveys is they can be completed whenever is most convenient to the clinician. 

It can be challenging to find legitimate surveys. However, Sermo’s physician platform makes it easy. Join the world’s first online community specifically for physicians and gain access to top-quality surveys that you can trust.

To get started, create your free Sermo account now.