Most Popular in:

Medical Esthetics

Email This Item! Print This Item!

The Physician's Role in a Medical Spa

By: Susie Naficy
Posted: January 29, 2010, from the January 2010 issue of
Male and female physicians smiling

$string.toUpperCase($string.substring($addOnType, 0, 1))$string.substring($addOnType, 1, $string.length($addOnType))s

page 2 of 4

A: Making the decision to add nonsurgical services to an existing menu of surgical services is a no-brainer, especially during the economic downturn when patients are much more likely to budget for inexpensive quick fixes as opposed to big ticket surgical procedures. However, the level at which the physician wants to integrate such services into the practice will depend on the level of complexity the doctor wants to undertake—and this is a personal decision.

All nonsurgical services can be administered by the physician, from lasers to injectables. However, there are multiple downsides to such a business model.

The downsides

Deters focus from surgical procedures. As a surgeon, time spent performing nonsurgical services is potentially time that cannot otherwise be spent administering more lucrative surgical procedures or providing surgical consults. Even if the surgical practice is slow during the down economy, getting sidetracked by performing nonsurgical services takes focus away from marketing activities a physician could be taking part in to increase surgical patients and prospects.

Limits the number of patients. There are only so many patients one physician can see in a day. Hiring additional staff makes the practice scalable, frees up the surgeon to perform more lucrative and specialized procedures, and also increases foot traffic in and out of the facility. Nonsurgical foot traffic generated by nurse injectors and estheticians often results in increased surgical patients and always results in more exposure for the clinic. In order to capitalize on the increase in patient flow created by ancillary staff, the physician needs to make sure that an effective cross-marketing program is well-established and all staff members have been well-trained. (Editor’s note: See “Effective Internal Cross-marketing” by Susie Naficy in the Fall 2009 issue of Merge magazine for tips about how to implement marketing across the different departments in your practice.)