Healthcare in the US needs the medical profession of course, but it also needs business people who understand the unique challenges this type of business presents. That is what healthcare is, a business that has many areas, many employees, endless premises, and many different ways of financing the care patients need. It is business on a huge scale that accounts for 18% of American GDP and is growing at a rate that some say is unsustainable.
Becoming Part Of The Medical Profession
If you want to get into the medical business by becoming a fully qualified doctor, you have several years of training ahead of you. The length of time involved can depend on what area you decide to specialize in, but once you have finished it all you have to obtain a license to practice and that can be an expensive business.
There are some areas that will take another 7 years after you have passed your basic medical training, brain surgery being just one example. In total that could mean it is 15 years after leaving high school that you are fully qualified, which is one of the reasons brain surgeons earn so much money.
The advances in technology have made a huge difference to the medical profession. Robotics is now used so that operations can be performed through smaller incisions. Virtual reality means that students that are training can perform surgery in the virtual world, so that they do not have to practice on real patients. Their tutors can watch from afar, and guide them through all the required stages. These are things that are not yet available everywhere, but they are becoming more common, and certainly are the best thing for patients.
There are others things you should be aware of as well. All members of the medical profession should be covered by professional indemnity insurance, sothat if someone decides to sue them, they can get the legal help they need. If you work in a hospital or clinic, often you will come under the umbrella of their insurance, but to be on the safe side it is wise to have your own policy as well so that you can be certain you are protecting yourself from medical malpractice lawsuits. A good medical malpractice lawyer will be able to get a very good deal for many people who may be harmed inadvertently by you, so this is really important. When it comes to people’s health, you really can’t take any chances and you should work hard to ensure no malpractice happens, but having an insurance policy is an essential backup should the worst happen.
You also need to realize that your training will never truly stop. As new medicines, research results and technology keep advancing, your knowledge will need to keep pace with it if you are to remain an effective medical professional.
Becoming Part Of The Business Of Health Care
What some of America’s leading business schools have noticed in recent years is that although there are still lots of students eager to make some money from launching the latest social media platform, or by being more innovative than Apple, there are more students than ever before expressing an interest in transforming the American health care system.
Anyone attempting to solve the nations health care problems will face many challenges. The quality of care needs improving and the cost involved reducing. This does not seem to be deterring some of the young business students, though. They know what they are up against and are ready to take on the task.
The way doctors and hospitals deliver care, and how they are paid is changing and for any entrepreneurs getting involved, it will look very different in the future. The way public and private health care exchanges are gaining pace will lead to more competitive insurance products for a better quality service.
For business students to be successful in this arena, they need to come up with digital solutions to the challenges, and some of them have already tried. As with new startups in any profession, there have been failures, but there are some who are starting to make a difference.
The ew health insurer, Oscar Health that was launched in 2014, is aiming to disrupt the highly regulated and complicated health insurance industry. It provides a more user-friendly service with instant access to doctors, price comparison tools and the ability to investigate alternative treatments. Castlight Health is a service employers can buy for their employees that offers similar things for patients.
Understanding The Risks
Most students are aware that the majority of startups fail, but so committed are they to improving the American health care system they still try to make a difference. It is different to many other industries in that the person receiving the treatment often is not the one paying for it. This makes it a more complex proposition than for startups in many other professions, and makes the risks even greater.
For any of them to succeed, they need to come up with ideas that will make a big difference, as small changes are happening naturally. They will probably need a well-funded partner too, as most failures are because of a lack of funds.
The most successful ones are likely to combine lessons from the existing large companies, with a fresh perspective shown by the smaller ones, with some new technology thrown into the mix. They also will have to be open to ideas from other parts of the world. There are some very successful health care systems in countries that are far poorer than the US. Some of these have embraced the culture of the medical professionals providing value for money, rather than being paid a set fee for each service they provide. This gives patients a feeling of more trust, and that they are being given what they pay for – a good quality service at a reasonable price.
It is not going to be easy but equipped with the right infrastructure, smart and passionate students have the chance to make meaningful changes that will alter American medicine, as we know it. For some of them it must seem a task as big as changing the world, but they still carry on because they want to make a difference that makes the US healthcare system better for all, no matter what their financial situation is.