Things they didn’t teach in medical school Part 12: How to run a business

One the the things they definitely didn’t teach in medical school is how to run a business.

It turns out that many doctors, especially those in primary care, but also those in specialist practice will be small business owners. In some cases they will be large business owners or small business owners having a lot of interaction with larger businesses.

I’ve already commented on quite a few “things they didn’t teach in medical school” but this one really isn’t covered at all. The others, so far, are touched on, but perhaps only in passing. A modern (Australian) medical graduate really confronts the business end of medical school when they are about to graduate – suddenly the insurance companies are taking you to dinner, locum companies are mailing your, the AMA is making offers.

When you finally finish your training and set up shop in a private practice then you might join or buy into an established practice or perhaps set up your own. Either way you will need to deal with government rules about licenses and billing, employing staff, leasing space and equipment, paying tax and paying yourself – all whilst doing your job of looking after people. In fact this is the first time you actually have to learn how the medical system works.

How to run a business isn’t taught in medical school – and it should be because it is part of reality. I bet somebody out there is making big bucks teaching docs how to do it.

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