Hospitals are hazardous to your practice.
Three decades ago, while I was in Residency, my slightly older colleagues found themselves courted by various hospital systems as they prepared to enter practice. These doctors boasted they were “in the driver’s seat.” The hospitals were going to offer them the sun, the moon and the stars.
A few years later, a pattern emerged. Suddenly, these same fellow doctors were radically changing practice and usually moving to different towns. The story was the same: “The hospital really played me and I fell for it.”
Their advice: “Don’t get close to the hospital. It usually ends badly.”
Yet, many could not resist and, again, did deals with hospitals and, again, were badly burned.
Are hospitals inherently evil? Does hospital administration plot late at night trying to destroy my practice?
Think about the problem of a “lack of shared interests.” It’s huge.
As doctors, we are mere chess pieces. We believe we are special. In reality, we are highly expendable.
And… doctors are attracted to hospitals because hospitals have a lot of money. Does that make a good marriage?
Doctors say: “Hospital administrators don’t have to work. They just get a lot of money.”
Guess what. Hospital administrators say: “We pay these doctors a ridiculous amount of money for not a lot of work.”
As money gets tighter, the venom I hear is getting stronger.
Why do hospital-doctor relationships go bad?
We walk into these things hating each other, pretending to be friends with common goals. We try to kid each other and ourselves that we are the best of buddies.
Soon, the façade crumbles and the real emotions come out.
Maybe it is time to say: “This is not a good marriage. You’re a smooth talker, but you’ll break my heart in the end!”
…Or, when a hospital administrator stops by to “help you,” scream: “RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!!!”Tweet