Medical Spa MD's physician community is worldwide. This poses some interesting challenges and some opportunities to learn how medicine is practiced elsewhere.
If you're not already aware, Medical Spa MD has physician members from 70+ countries... meaning that there are a number of differences in the way that medicine is practiced across the community. The map above shows some of the distribution of Members by location. The reason that I bring this up is to highlight that there are differences between where and how members of our community practice medicine.
Let me tell you a story or two about some of these differences.
In Mexico, plastic surgeons are less worried about being sued.
A few years ago at a major cosmetic medical conference in Las Vegas with very well known physicians presenting. I atteneded a presentation by a plastic surgeon from Mexico discussing one of the new (at that time) suture plication techniques for facelifts. I'll call the presenter Dr. M.
During this surgeons presentation, Dr. M discussed case study after case study in a way that made it apparent to every other doctor in the audience that he was in fact 'experimenting' on patients in order to guage how results would differ with different techniques.
Dr. M was detailing how he had arrived at what he felt was the optimial technique by identifying likely canditate patients, offering them a greatly reduced price, and then basically trying out a different technique to determine an outcome. The clear message was that he was just trying different things out to see what worked and what didn't work, i.e., experimenting on patients.
You could see a lot of slightly raised eyebrows in the room.
As is usual after a conference presentation, a group formed around Dr. M after his presentation to ask follow up questions or make a connection. After a couple of handshakes the questioning started to revolve around a very specific theme. The US physicians (the very clear majority since we were in Vegas) began asking questions that expresed a large amount of skepticism that they could have interpreted the presentation correctly. Namely, that any plastic surgeon could be performing experimental treatments on patients in the way that he'd described. (I should clearly state that Dr. M indicated that he clearly informed all of these patients of what he was doing and got their consent.)
The physicians weren't really challenging this physicians techniques or professionalism as much as questioning Dr. M about his patient practices and wondering how he could actually get away with this with his malpractice insurance and medical regluatory agencys.
The questions started to revolve around patients who were unhappy with their outcomes and how this physician was handling them. Dr. M freely admitted that there had been any number of failures and that some patients had had poor outcomes and were unhappy but expressed the sentiment that that was really not a big deal.
The US physicians were somewhat incredulous and one slightly exaperated physician asked, "What do you do if they come back to your office and complain?"
"We call the police," he said nonplussed.
Raised eyebrows all around.
Now, to be fair, Dr. M's answer was really based on his perception that the question was about a patient raising hell in his clinic and that answer would be the same answer that any physician would give, but the incredulity that prompted the question was really about how any doctor could get away with performing experimental procedures without being sued out of existence.
What's even more eye-opening to a lot of American physicians was that Dr. M had never been sued.
If you're a plastic surgeon in the US and you've been practicing for a while, the odds are good that you've been sued by a patient and if you're practicing new treatments that could be defined as experimental as a plastic surgeon, you're going to be sued... and dropped by your malpractice carrier. It seems that if you're a plastic surgeon in Mexico you don't have the same considerations to deal with.
Does it mean that plastic surgery outside the US is less safe? Possibly, since there's no other country that regulates the practice of medicine the way that the US does, but it's also the case that many of the 'medical tourism' destinations are staffed by US trained physicians. (If anyone has stats on this I'd be interested to see them.) There are a growing number of hospitals outsourcing xrays to radiologists in India, medical tourisim is increasingly mainstream, and US physicians are traveling outside of the US for trainings.
Medical Spa MD has members around the world. If you're smart, you'll take the opportunity to learn from everyone, no matter where they are.
I'll be speaking (twice) at the non-clincal Medical Fusion Conference on November 11-13th in Las Vegas.
The Medical Fusion Conference is a unique event that allows clinical physicians the opportunity to learn about unique niches where they can apply their clinical knowledge and gain real control of your income and lifestyle. (Isn't that why most docs are in cosmetic medicine in the first place?)
I've been to a lot of aesthetic and cosmetic conferences and trade shows, but this conference is different. I went to it last year and the result was that we launched Freelance MD!
Medical Fusion is purposely small. It allows you to sit down (multiple times) with any or all of the speakers and pick their brains. (If you've been to any of the big conferences you know that a the end of a talk or session there's a pack of people around the speaker for ten minutes and that's about it. Not at Medical Fusion.)
Who is Medical Fusion for?
Any physician who wants more control of their income, career, and lifestyle.
- A plastic surgeon who want's to learn how to invest in real estate.
- An internal medicine doc who want's to retire and write a book.
- A dermatologist who want's to leave clinical practice and consult to big pharma.
- A family practitioner who want's to leave Medicare and Medicate and start a concierge practice.
- A surgeon who want's to make sure his retirement is secure.
- An ER doc who want's to travel and work internationally.
- A Pediatrician who want's to publish a children's book.
- A cosmetic surgeon who's ready to grow his cosmetic practice or medical spa. ; )
- Any doctor who's thinking of leaving clinical practice.
- Any doctor who want's to spend more time with your family and kids.
- Any doctor who's looking to increase their income.
- Any doctor who's looking for a change.
And that's just a part. In short, if you're a physician who want's to take control of your life, this is the conference for you.
I'll be speaking on two topics; how to start/add/run and grow a cosmetic practice, and how to use online technologies to make money as a physician.
There will also be speakers on personal finance, investing, product development, and a bunch of other stuff including concierge medicine which a lot of you have expressed interest in. (More about that in another post.)
Register before October 10th and reserve your room at the beautiful Aria Resort for a special discounted room rate of only $179 plus resort fee. These rooms are regularly around $400. (You must book your room at the Aria prior to October 10th to lock in these special rates!)
Take a look at some of these videos that Greg made about Medfusion and then run over and register for the Medical Fusion Conference.
Discover all of the options available to you as a physician.
Medical Fusion isn't just another conference where you're sitting around and listening to an endless parade of speakers that lecture from behind a podium. Instead, you'll have every opportunity to talk to any speaker you're interested in learning more from. Our Accelerator Sessions are a perfect chance to make connections and deep-dive into the areas that are of interest to you.
More about our Accelerator Sessions
By Michelle Mudge-Riley DO, MHA
Making The Most Of Your Time & Money
Last week I attended the American Medical Group Association (AMGA) Annual Conference, “Learning from the Best” at the Gaylord National Resort in Washington, D.C. This was my first AMGA conference and the first conference I’ve been able to attend for several years.
There hasn’t been time for a conference in awhile but suddenly, this year I’m attending three of them. I’ll be a mentor or a speaker at the other two conferences I’m planning to attend this fall. These are the SEAK Non-Clinical Careers for Physicians Conference and the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) Conference where I’ll speak about physician career strategies and avoiding/healing physician burnout.
Conferences are a great way to build your network and see what companies are doing and what opportunities may exist for you. They are also a good way to find out more about an industry you want to break into and gain experience in. For this reason, when working with physicians to help them find opportunities to enhance their revenue or find non-clinical opportunities, I often recommend attending a conference.
Here are two recent examples of successful outcomes that resulted from attending a conference:
1. Allscripts is a company many doctors ask me about and getting hired by this company has eluded many very well qualified doctors. I believe personal connections can help physicians get directly in front of decision makers. At the AMGA conference, I visited the Allscripts booth where I introduced myself and asked about physician opportunities. That led to an introduction to another physician, a D.O. (like myself) who works with the company and actually designed a technology that is used at the company. He knows of multiple opportunities available for physicians and wants me to follow up with him so we can find a good fit (or two).
2. A surgeon who’s been working with me attended the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) conference on my recommendation. He took time out of his clinical practice and traveled without his family to a strange city where he spent several days in a hotel as he attended the conference. That’s a pretty big investment. I got a call from him two weeks after he got back. He wanted advice pursuing three very promising leads in consulting and IT work. He’d even created an opportunity in his own community for this work, based on some of the things he saw and learned about at the HIMSS conference.
Attending a conference can be expensive after you pay the conference fee, travel to the geographic location (often far away from you), stay in a hotel and eat while you are there. That means attending a conference requires a plan so you can get the most out of the time and money you spend. Here are some tips I’ve found to be helpful for the physicians I work with to help them make the most out of a conference.
1. Remember it’s going to appear overwhelming. There will be lots of people you’ve never seen all gathered in one place. It might seem like everyone knows everyone else but in reality, most people don’t know more than two or three other people at the conference. Many are there alone. Introduce yourself to someone. You will be pleasantly surprised that it’s not as hard as it seems to strike up a conversation with a stranger. After all, you already share one thing in common – you’re at the same conference.
2. Bring business cards – but collect more. You may have already thought about your own business cards but remember, most people misplace one or two (or more) of the cards they get. You don’t want to be waiting for the call or e-mail that never comes from someone you really hit it off with and hope to work with in the future. Be sure to collect the cards and write notes to yourself on the back of each one, reminding you why you enjoyed talking to that individual and what you hope to gain when you follow up.
3. Follow up within a week of the conference. Going to a conference and networking are useless without follow-up. You may have had the best conversation in the world with someone but without further conversations, you aren’t going to actually move that opportunity forward and work with someone. On this same note, don’t worry if you don’t feel like you made the best impression on someone you met. The real connection will come with the follow-up. But the follow-up is up to you.
4. Spend some time in the vendor area. It’s a good idea to consider spending at least a quarter of your time here. This is where you will discover companies you didn’t know existed that might be interested in hiring a physician either directly or as a consultant. Ask about this and get contact names/information for people within the company. This will help you avoid the “HR trap” of cold calling a company.
5. Approach the speakers and get their contact information. These are experts in their field and if they are speaking at a conference, they are probably interested in helping someone in the area they know about and understand. Not only will they be good individuals to ask questions about the industry, they are likely well connected and may be able to provide an introduction or two for you to others in the field.
Good luck! Feel free to comment on what’s worked (or hasn’t worked) for you when you’ve attended a conference.
About: Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley blogs at Freelance MD.
By Greg Bledsoe MD
At every Medical Fusion Conference we attempt to cover the most pertinent topics for clinical physicians who are attempting to branch out from their clinical careers.
For 2011, we've once again assembled a stellar faculty comprised of leaders in many diverse niches from around the country, and have included many hot topics that physicians should be exposed to in this ever-changing healthcare environment.
Our 2011 faculty list was recently published on Freelance MD, but we've added a few more names so I've decided to list our entire 2011 Medical Fusion Conference faculty once again. Many of these faculty members are authors on Freelance MD so you can read about their backgrounds and perspectives. I'm also listing our agenda below so you can get an idea of what's going to be discussed at this year's event.
The 2011 Medical Fusion Conference is November 11-13, 2011 and space is limited. If you're interested in attending you can register online or call 866-924-7969 .
Our 2011 Medical Fusion Conference faculty:
- Dr. Barry Silbaugh, President of the American College of Physician Executives
- Ashley Wendel, founder of High Agility Healthcare
- Dr. Setu Mazumdar, founder of Lotus Wealth Solutions
- Dr. Steven Knope, author of Concierge Medicine: A New System to Get the Best Healthcare
- Jeff Barson, founder Surface Medical, Medical Spa MD and Freelance MD
- Dr. Gary Taff, real estate investor
- Dr. Julie Silver, Chief Editor of Harvard Health Publications
- Dr. Mike Woo-Ming, internet entrepreneur
- Dr. Kenneth Cohn, independent consultant and founder of HealthcareCollaboration.com
- Dr. Gautam Gulati, Senior VP of Digitas Health
- Dr. Steven Peskin, Executive VP and CMO of MediMedia
- Dr. Alan Neuren, disability review consultant
- Tannus Quatre, Principal at Vantage Clinical Solutions
Our conference topics this year are wide-ranging and cover many niches within and around clinical medicine. Our 2011 agenda is the following:
Friday, November 11th
Saturday, November 12th
Sunday, November 13th
I wanted to make sure I highlighted our two Accelerator sessions at the end of each day. Our Accelerators are some of our most popular times spent at the Medical Fusion Conference since each faculty and mentor has a table, and participants are allowed to wander from faculty member to faculty member and ask any and all questions of the speakers. No other event allows you this much face-time with nationally known leaders. Our participants raved about our Accelerator sessions in 2010 and we know that our 2011 participants will also enjoy this time.
As you can see from our faculty list and our agenda, Medical Fusion participants will be given exposure to a wide array of interesting topics and significant time with our stellar faculty. There's no event like the Medical Fusion Conference and there's only one Medical Fusion Conference in 2011: November 11-13, at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. It's the most exciting and invigorating medical conference in the country.