The scalpel stops with you: the ethics of healthcare startups

With start-ups cropping up in every industry, healthcare is no exception. Start-ups are based on the premise of learn as you grow, low manpower and aggressive cost cutting, but applying these to the medical space could put patients in danger. What is the best way to start a healthcare practice?

1. People First

Due to the nature of medicine, the medical field is highly specialised. Patient expect a certain level of expertise and professionalism when they walk into a practice. Very often when start-ups begin they do not have much capital and therefore do not hire the most experienced people. Opting to train talented people at a lower cost often works in the long run but does have costs in quality in the short term. In the medical space the price of every mistake is much higher, in the case of personnel you simply cannot afford to skimp. Hire the best talent. This will ensure that patients consistently receive great service and will begin to view you as a trusted partner.

2. Start-up Mentality

One of the key differentiators between a start-up and a more established business is the ability to be aggressive and innovative without the burden of red tape. Use those opportunities to be thinking further. Start reading up on new technologies in the field, interesting applications and carve out a niche for yourself. Being a smaller business also means are personal relationships with your patients, used correctly this could help in your treatment as patients will be more willing to open up to you and share any concerns. Patient relationships are good business, make sure to use the proximity to your advantage.

3. Establish Structure

While a start-up mentality is important for scale and innovation, in the medical space, having set structures and protocols are critical for avoiding mistakes. In this case, it is important you consider what the best practice management software is and how best to run the administrative side of your practice. Especially when you are starting out, the admin portion will be crucial for ensuring that your business thrives.

4. Break the Start-up Stigma

Very often there is a stigma around the quality of start-ups stemming from the belief that many start-ups will prioritise cost-cutting measures even at the detriment of quality. Especially where patients are dealing with their health, trust is important. It is crucial that start-ups ensure that they consistently offer quality care. Once patients are able to see the value your business places on high-quality care, they will find it easier to trust your care.

5. Don’t Box Yourself

Very often start-ups begin with the intention of competing with more established companies in their space. Scale is important for any business but that does not necessarily mean adopting every element of bigger businesses. Pick and choose what works for your business and walk your own path. That is the beauty of a start-up, the blank canvas.

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