Should the Business of Medicine be Integrated into School Curriculum? (Continued)

Dana Corriel, MD, continues to facilitate the discussion on whether the business of medicine should be inserted into the curriculum of medical schools.

November 9, 2023

An Ongoing Debate

We’ve got more input into the topic of whether business curriculum should be integrated into our medical education.

For reference, the article to bring this to light, Medical Schools Rob Us of Relevant Business Curriculum, can be found here.

This is especially relevant as SoMeDocs readies itself to debut its brand new STUDENT section.


Thoughts on the Business of Medicine

The following are some of the comments I received after publishing my two articles.

Sharon Ng, MD:

Preventative & Precision Health Consultant, had this to say:

There absolutely should be business education, and financial education, along with marketing education. I would’ve gladly done an extra year of residency if I got that kind of physician-specific business/finance/marketing education. Med students and residents are groomed to be cogs in the wheel. “Don’t worry about the business aspect, just focus on seeing your patients…and make sure you’re coding correctly.” I’m beginning to think the lack of this education is on purpose because somebody needs to feed the factory more assembly line workers. There needs to be a return of physician CEOs of their own practice. The good thing is, unlike medicine, you don’t need a degree to learn business.

Isn’t it interesting that students are groomed to be part of this “wheel”?

Should healthcare even BE a wheel?

Aren’t each of us – patients – different? Don’t we deserve the time and care required to differentiate us from the others?

Please understand that when healthcare makes cogs out of its doctors, it’s definitely making cogs out of its patients, too.


Please understand that when healthcare makes cogs out of its doctors, it's definitely making cogs out of its patients, too. Click To Tweet


Susan Patnaik:

a writer, storyteller and communications specialist, replied to Dr. Ng’s comment:

Patients don’t want to be cared for by Cogs. They want to be cared for by Doctors. And we can feel the difference. We know that System Doctors are being turned into Cogs and cheer those who resist.

Another cog reference.

Boy, is this a common theme…

Makes you really think, doesn’t it?


David Orji:

a 5+ Years Seasoned Healthcare Web Designer, had this to say:

This post initiates a crucial conversation about the necessity of teaching the “business of medicine” during doctors’ training. By showcasing diverse perspectives, including insightful comments from industry professionals, you’ve created a platform for meaningful dialogue and reflection within the medical community. Encouraging further engagement and contributions, you’re fostering a collaborative environment for sharing valuable insights and experiences. Keep the conversation going!

This refers to the SoMeDocs movement, as a whole. Part of that is this website you’re on, right here.

Thank you for the kind words.


Susan Baumgaertel, MD:

The answer is a resounding yes. BUT, only if the “business of medicine” is taught by someone who is OUTSIDE of the corporate mess—otherwise, it would end up being a form of brainwashing, I’m afraid.

How interesting, eh?

Conflicts of interest are typically only enforced in healthcare when we give lectures to each other, and they typically pertain to the roles we play as advisors to phamraceutical companies and insurances. But COI’s don’t really pertain to who teaches what at school.

An important point to make.


Tess Gordon MD, MBA:

My favorite classes in the MBA in order were 1. Accounting (not just healthcare accounting), 2. Corporate Finance, 3. Economics.
Having said that, I was naive in medical school, residency, and 17 years of practice about the captured medical-pharmaceutical-legislative industrial complex.
I do know that I had a very rich background I could apply to my MBA work. A hybrid class of my three favorite classes (created with the input of Dr. Eric Bricker and Marc Cuban) would be a great addition to medical school in my opinion.

Listen to what this doc has to say. She’s taken the courses and is seeing a payoff for the ones that hit home.


Michael Hersh, MD:

At the end of the day, there is zero downside to teaching physicians about the business side of medicine, except maybe that it will spark interest and result in fewer job opportunities for the MBA-only candidates.

My response: the only downside I can think of is time. Trainees are already inundated. We must somehow figure out how to best fit it in, as well as how to include the most relevant information that actually helps. Actionable steps.


Robert Kornfeld, DPM:

The reason they do not teach medicine in business schools is because no one will be practicing medicine. But doctors run businesses and the fact that there is no business training, or at least some courses on how to run a successful medical practice, is negligent on the part of medical schools.

It makes no sense, I replied to him.

We’re released into the real world, without an ounce of understanding on how to manage our professional lives. I guess they assume we’ll just work for someone else.

Therein lies the problem.


Wrapping Up

That’s it for now. But not necessarily an end to this conversation.

If you have your own words you’d like to add, in the form of an article, or video, you can submit them here.

I’m hoping we can keep it going. And at the least, convince some of you that entrepreneurship really IS worthy of curriculum insertion. Or, of learning after you’ve trained, on your own.

In the words of Peter Drucker, Austrian American management consultant, educator, and author, “The best way to predict the future is to create it.”


Dana Corriel, MD

Dana Corriel, MD

“I haven’t LEFT medicine, I’m simply taking time to tackle its issues from a different angle. I’m stepping out of the traditional medicine box.”

All opinions published on SomeDocs-Mag are the author’s and do not reflect the official position of SoMeDocs, its staff, editors. SoMeDocs is a magazine built with the safety of free expression and diverse perspectives in mind. For more information, or to submit your own opinion, please see our submission guidelines or email opmed@doximity.com. Do you have a compelling personal story you’d like to see published on SoMeDocs? Find out what we’re looking for here and submit your writing, or send us a pitch.

All opinions published on SomeDocs-Mag are the author’s and do not reflect the official position of SoMeDocs, its staff, editors. SoMeDocs is a magazine built with the safety of free expression and diverse perspectives in mind. Do you have a compelling personal story you’d like to see published on SoMeDocs? Submit your own article now here.


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