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Should Your Doc Have a Side Hustle

E.R. Dr. John Shufeldt helps fellow physicians start businesses, saying that reduces physician burnout and actually benefits patients.

What would you think if you knew your doc had a side hustle? Another part-time job? Or even ran a separate business or two? Think that would be a good idea?

Dr. John Shufeldt is an emergency physician who advises fellow physicians how to do exactly that -- how to become an entrepreneur and develop a new business while also practicing medicine.

In this episode, Dr. Shufeldt explains how, in a time when physician burnout is a big problem, having a side gig can be a good thing for doctors, and that patients can ultimately benefit.

Dr. Shufeldt is author of Entrepreneur Rx: The Physician’s Guide To Starting A Business. So, he’s encouraging his fellow docs to start a side gig.

I wanted to know from Dr. Shufeldt how having a side gig would, in any way, benefit a doctor’s patients. After all, docs are supposed to be dedicated to helping people heal. How can they do that if they’re worried about their side gig’s bottom line, or some deadline, while they’re doing brain surgery, for example?

Dr. Shufeldt answers that question in the interview and also discusses these questions, among others:

  • Why do you say that being an entrepreneur has made you a better physician?

  • What leads to physician burnout and how does it affect our healthcare system?

  • How has COVID added to the burnout problem?

  • Patients might say they prefer that their doctors focus on caring for them rather than worrying about some side gig. Why are they wrong?

  • What are some traits that physicians and entrepreneurs have in common, and how do those traits improve patient care?

In the episode, Dr. Shufeldt also discusses how discouraging it is for physicians to be faced with treating deathly ill unvaccinated Covid patients, knowing that the "easy fix" of the vaccine could have saved their lives. You can catch a quick video that focuses on those issues here.

Meanwhile, listen to the full interview here:

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