By Reza Mirali, MD, MBA, FACS
Physicians in almost every aspect of their career paths, are not a monolithic entity. Some of us have always known they will be at a hospital or a large group and are at peace with it. Some others have always held the ambition that after years of sacrifice, hard work and loads of debt they will be their own boss, and run their own medical practice. Similarly, there is also a contingent of physicians that have not decided and are still open to all options.
Sadly, the truth at this time is that >80% of graduating physicians are entering an employed model due to a of lack of education regarding running a medical business (not a new problem), higher financial educational debts (new!). Combined with higher financial barriers to entry into independent practice and mounting government regulations, many new residency graduates view private practice as a non-viable option straight out of training.
Frankly, for those of us that never wanted to become employed, entering the employed medical model was always a difficult pill to swallow. Employed models offer the lure of a guaranteed salary for the first few years but eventually physicians in this model often come to realize that the administrative demands are high. With many physicians realizing the stress and demands of corporate hierarchy at large institutions frankly insulting to our level of education and mental capability. Physicians in employed models are often at a crossroads, to stay in the same undesirable model or to take the leap and go into a model that was originally passed over due to its seemingly insurmountable challenges.
The guidance to help physicians in their decision have been either not available or physicians have not been in a suitable financial position to undertake a transition. Cowork Medical helps physicians overcome these barriers. Cowork is more that just medical space sharing and medical office leasing. Our model goes deeper into understanding how practices success and aims to provide the physicians with a comprehensive support structure to help physicians navigate this challenging transition from an employed model to an independent model. Hopefully, in the process, helping them realize their dreams of maintaining their autonomy.
Our larger goal is to ultimately provide all the upsides of an employed model (access to resources and benefits) but in an independent model, helping the physician to maintain maximal flexibility and optimize their own work-life balance as they see fit. The flexible use of staff, resources and space are just some of the benefits that will help drive down the costs and overhead of a medical practice. The value proposition to our members lies in the benefits of zero build-out costs, zero cost to access other geographic locations for growth, HR benefits for their staff, and discounts on large purchases and group insurance benefits. The end result is physicians accelerating their practice, intelligently managing overhead and taking more of what they earn home.
An additional benefit of Cowork is the sense of physician community that it fosters. The organic coalescence of physicians that share a passion for excellent patient care and maintaining autonomy results in a support and referral network for new practices joining the model. In turn, nurturing the growth of new entrants and stimulating exchange of ideas, collaboration and professional growth.