It’s 2021 and some doctors still think that it’s weird to do telemedicine or they believe that there are no remote working opportunities for physicians. If not for the pandemic telehealth wouldn’t have taken centerstage, but what about all of the other remote working gigs for physicians? Those have always been around and are growing.
The reason I highlight such work is because I’m interested in it. Clinical medicine doesn’t do it for me the same way it used to. I wish it did – it’s the easiest thing I know how to do. Give me a strep throat patient or a UTI or an asthma attack and I am in my element.
Remote Clinical Medicine
Let’s talk some fun. Look, nobody wants to feel stagnant in their career. So, here are some things I’ve come across consistently when it comes to income opportunities out there.
The first clinical remote work you might consider might be telemedicine. You don’t need much help there because there is a lot to choose from. But I think there is more than you might think.
You don’t have to see patients. You can also be a clinical lead for a telehealth company. You can be the chief medical officer or a quality assurance clinician for their physician group.
When it comes to being a CMO don’t think Apple Health or UCLA – there are tons of smaller groups which need a physician as their executive director. This could be medical device companies, health tech companies, genetic research companies, etc.
Most telehealth companies need their clinical group which is called the Professional Corporation. You can be the PC holder which exposes you to some slight risk, sure, but if you’re active as a PC holder you have a lot of say.
There is also utilization management review. There are lots of mainstream jobs which are a touch boring. But some smaller companies and startups are really fun and you’ll learn a lot.
Remote Clinical Consulting
I love clinical consulting because it’s basically selling my clinical knowledge to someone else. Doesn’t matter who. It could be a company, an individual, or a publication.
An author might need your expertise when it comes to setting up a clinical scene. Or a medical device company wants to talk to you before spending a lot on R&D.
You can even find patients who are looking to discuss something clinical with a physician. These individuals can be found posting on various job forums or they could be social forums. If you put yourself out there you’ll come across someone willing to pay you money for your expertise. Quora is a good place for such remote work consulting opportunities.
Remote Healthcare Consulting
Doing remote work within healthcare can take on so many forms. With this category what I had in mind is finding your own healthcare consulting clients.
You can reach out to Linkedin groups or businesses listed on Linkedin or anywhere else and tell them what you do. Maybe you’re interested in the clinical aspect of an app that someone is working on. Or you have a lot of patient experience with a particular medical condition (pain, depression).
I often start with a free intro meeting and then the next time I meet with them I ask for a $75-150 fee depending on what they need. We might agree on some more meetings or perhaps a project I might take on for them as a physician.
Just put yourself in the shoes of a business starting a healthcare product and think of what you can offer them as a physician.
Medical schools, nursing schools, and 3rd party education vendors need teachers who can teach clinical content to their students and customers.
Teaching is a great option for remote work. Your pay might only be $50 an hour but it’s quite possible to see rates as high as $150.
I had a friend in Portland who was getting $300 per hour teaching clinical English to foreign executives. And she wasn’t a physician.
There is something you know better than anyone else in clinical medicine. Maybe you’re really good at hunting for jobs. Or you’re great at a certain complicated medical procedure. Perhaps you’re amazing with patients.
Whatever your skill might be there is someone out there who needs you on their A-team. The hard part is finding them and then convincing them that you can do a better job than the workflow they have now.
This kind of remote coaching is very common in larger medical groups and could help you build your niche and work remotely. One of my colleagues who later did a JD on top of her MD does pain management coaching for physicians on the side.
I thought I’d add a few words about the income here. One thing that’s great about remote work is that you don’t have to live in a high cost of living zip code to earn your money remotely.
As a physician, you can probably earn anywhere from $50-300 per hour doing remote work. You can work full-time, part-time, or as a consultant. Your clients can be in the US or abroad.
You’ll get your pay either based on the hours you’ve put in or based on a project you have completed. It’s a great way to earn a good income. And you don’t have to have just one client.