Six Ways to Earn Extra Income From Medical Activities

Dennis G. Murray

Disclosures

April 27, 2010

In This Article

Introduction

You're chasing after claims but watching reimbursement sink.

It's a common story, and primary care doctors and even specialists are keeping their ears to the ground for other ways to boost their bottom line. Luckily, doctors have some fairly lucrative options that can help them maintain their income -- and perhaps even increase it.

We looked at 6 avenues that physicians have taken to earn extra revenue. None of these activities require a tremendous amount of time. Participating in just 1 or 2 activities can put enough money in your pocket to allow you to breathe a little easier when the bills come in. Here are several popular ones for consideration.

Work With Attorneys

Yes, you read that right. Lawyers who handle medical malpractice cases have come to rely on the expert opinions of practicing physicians to bolster their clients' claims. Doctors are hired for everything from examining the relevant medical records in a case and rendering an opinion, to testifying in court on behalf of a plaintiff or a physician-defendant.

To do this job, it's useful to also have strong people skills. If you wind up on the witness stand, it's especially important that you be able to communicate complex subjects clearly and simply to laypeople.

Pros: Reviewing records might pay $200-$300 per hour or more, depending on the complexity of the case, where you practice, and a number of other factors. Depending on your medical specialty, credentials, and experience, you can command between $2000 and $5000 per day, plus expenses, to testify at a deposition or trial.

Cons: Expert witnesses, especially those who testify against doctors, run the risk of being labeled "hired guns" who don't always endear themselves to their colleagues.

How to find out more: National Medical Consultants, based in Bayside, New York, is a doctor-owned company that has about 1800 medical experts available to law firms throughout the country (www.nationalmedicalconsultants.com). A more direct approach to finding this sort of work would be to offer your services to local law firms that specialize in medical malpractice cases.

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