According to Inc., some of the top characteristics of successful entrepreneurs include motivation, future-oriented thinking, resourcefulness and decisiveness. It should be no surprise then, that physicians are often also good entrepreneurs. In addition to these traits, they typically are skilled in problem-solving and critical decision-making.

The Society of Physician Entrepreneurs (SOPE) defines entrepreneurship as “the pursuit of opportunity with scarce, uncontrolled resources”. According to SOPE, the goal of all entrepreneurs, including physician entrepreneurs, is to create user-defined value through the deployment of innovation. The organization also notes that there are many different roles for physician entrepreneurs as small to medium-sized business owners, technopreneurs, social entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs. Many of these enable doctors to use their education to benefit the future of healthcare.

Let’s take a look at a few areas where physicians have utilized their extensive training outside of the clinic.

Healthcare Technology

Because they’re directly involved in patient care, physicians are an obvious choice to lead startups focused on technology for the healthcare industry. They understand how products and services must meet the workflow needs of healthcare providers and various regulatory standards. In 2017, the American Medical Association (AMA) launched the Physician Innovation Network (PIN), an online community that connects and matches physicians with digital health companies and entrepreneurs. Containing spending in healthcare is one of the primary goals of the industry, and emerging technologies can play a big role in that effort.

Physician Management Consulting

Doctors involved in these types of companies use their medical education and experience to analyze a provider’s processes and offer strategies to optimize them. For example, they may examine staffing and budgeting within a healthcare organization and provide recommendations on how to enhance the resources already in place without spending money. Or, they may review a provider’s safety and security guidelines and give detailed suggestions on how to better secure patient health information, thereby protecting patient safety and reducing the risk for litigation.

Independent Medical Review

Doctors may utilize their medical expertise to conduct independent medical reviews as contractors for an independent review organization (IRO), such as MLS Group of Companies, LLC. A physician reviewer’s role is to review a patient’s chart and utilize evidence-based research and industry guidelines to assess whether another physician administered appropriate and necessary treatment. As an actively-practicing physician reviewer, they can ensure credibility and integrity into the process by participating in reviewing their peer’s work.

The external review process encourages physician reviewers to stay up-to-date with medical research and treatment protocols while also ensuring patients’ claims appeals are reviewed fairly and objectively. Some IROs began as physician entrepreneur ventures, but, whether owned by physicians or healthcare professionals, all offer an opportunity for supplemental income to practicing physicians.

Utilizing Medical Knowledge for Good

Physicians spend years studying, perfecting their skills and actively providing care, thus using their medical knowledge to benefit others. More than 30% of physicians report earning income from an employment source outside their practice. Whether they are future oriented entrepreneurs inventing medical tech solutions or doctors who identify ways to enhance their medical contributions in a clinical setting, options abound. Additional employment can hone their skills, give additional medical training and further their education. 

Learn more about the services at MLS Group of Companies, LLC and how physicians can lend their expertise and knowledge to benefit the external review process.

Innovative Ways Physicians Employ Their Training and Expertise Beyond the Clinic