Creating a Sustainable Business in Healthcare

By Dr. KC Coninx PT, DPT
Certifications: COMT, PYT

Creating a sustainable business in healthcare, specifically in physical therapy, occupational therapy, and/or mental health, makes us think of 2 things:

1) What are your patients’ needs? and

2) What do you as a provider need in order to sustain your work well?

One of the main reasons most people get into healthcare is to help improve the lives of others. I also realize that the altruistic goal of helping others is quite rapidly pushed down low on the priority list as soon as our first graduate loan payments are deducted from our bank account.  Or, we have that initial conversation with our boss about productivity and billing.

We cannot seek achievement for ourselves and forget about progress and prosperity for our community … Our ambitions must be broad enough to include the aspirations and needs of others, for their sakes and for our own.

– Cesar Chavez

The Business of Healthcare 

“It’s business.” 

At this point in my life, it’s nearly impossible for me not to roll my eyes every time I hear that statement.

We live in a world where the belief is that business is a selfish endeavor and the people who run businesses are selfish people.

I have also worked in several different healthcare settings where the financial burden or profitability appeared to be the ONLY factors for making business decisions.

I have also worked in several different healthcare settings where the financial burden or profitability appeared to be the ONLY factors for making business decisions.

Not so surprisingly, we end up in a self-fulfilling prophecy of healthcare businesses caring MAINLY about their bottom line and patients/providers getting the short end of the stick.  This is clearly not what Cesar Chavez meant by seeking personal achievement while including the aspirations and needs of others.

But isn’t this exactly what a thriving healthcare business could look like?

I can imagine a healthy business which creates a sustainable life for the owner and practitioner, while also caring for the needs of the community.  Doesn’t that seem amazing?

Yes, but how?!

Superb question….let’s dig into the idea of sustainability in business

How is it possible to create a sustainable business that serves both the owner and the community in a way that everyone thrives?

Let’s start with what won’t work.

  • The current insurance model which leaves less and less time for practitioners to spend with their patients.
  • Practices that push disproven treatments on their patients.
  • Frequent referrals out to other specialities without a practitioner to manage it all
  • Reliance on Rx Pain Medications

So what does work?

  • Cash-based or hybrid models
  • Seeing one patient at a time
  • Offering lifestyle education to make real change for people’s health
  • Using Medical Therapeutic Yoga in individual or group settings

Why do these steps create a sustainable business for YOU and YOUR patients?

When you slow down and see one patient and a time, you can make a greater impact in a shorter time.  You have the opportunity to learn about who they are and help guide them to their best self.  You also create a space where the people sitting across from you suddenly have hope for a positive future…which likely no one else has told them. 

Additionally, this payment model can lead to more responsibility on the part of the patient.

I distinctly remember having a conversation with a patient when I was working in a corporate outpatient clinic.  This particular patient had Medicare for insurance, and was a kind, sweet soul who never did any part of her home program.  After trying countless ways to encourage and motivate her to gain even a tiny bit of compliance, she said to me, “I bet I would actually do the work if I had to pay for this.”

I simply nodded my head in agreement (and with exhaustion).

Let’s be the change you wish to see in the world.

Creating a Sustainable Business in Healthcare
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We all want to be heard, validated, and feel like we have a safe space to be honest about our struggles.  Can that really be done in an open room with several other patients or in 5 minutes with the doctor?

What if you start by believing that you can run a sustainable, successful business where the owners, providers, and patients all thrive?

“All [people] dream; but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds awake to find that it was vanity; But the dreamers of day are dangerous [people]. That they may act their dreams with open eyes to make it possible.”  – D.H. Lawrence

We can make this dream a reality.

Are you ready to learn more? 

Book a FREE discovery call with our master coach today!

Are you a Healthcare Professional seeking experiential understanding and accountability in implementing Lifestyle Medicine and Medical Therapeutic Yoga into your routine? Check out our Professional Coaching Programs which are transforming healthcare through promoting self-care, first.

Dr. KC Coninx, PT, DPT -
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Dr. KC Coninx PT, DPT, COMT, PYT

She has been practicing physical therapist since 2011 and in 2016 began following my inner voice and intuition to further explore therapeutic yoga, mindfulness, meditation, Ayurveda, acceptance and commitment therapy, and lifestyle medicine to both enhance my own health and well-being and that of my clients and patients.

She received her Professional Yoga Therapy Certification and Lifestyle Medicine Certification through Living Well Institute. She earned my Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Northwestern University and my Bachelor’s of Science in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Illinois. Yes…it was a bit of a detour. Isn’t that life…sometimes it doesn’t follow a straight line.

As the Master Coach for Living Well Institute, she is here to help answer your questions about the professional and self-care programs and to guide you through to the best option for your unique goals and aspirations.

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