Stephen C. Beeson, MD, author and medical director at Studor Group says, “You must prove your abilities and your willingness to be a team player. As a shareholder, you’ll have a small ownership position. If you don’t make shareholder, your contract isn’t renewed.”
“We are in the same boat.” When Pope Clement I uttered those words to the church in Corinth sometime in the first century A.D., there is likely no chance he thought the phrase might one day apply to physician partnerships, but the words are as apt now as then.
Physicians who join together as business partners are in the same boat and must sink or swim together. It therefore becomes critical that a physician who seeks to join a practice with partnership potential does as much as possible upfront to ensure that the relationship is seaworthy.
Jeffrey Long, MD, a board-certified radiation oncologist at Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center at Terrebonne General Medical Center in Houma, Louisiana, has worked as an employed physician, in an academic setting, and in partnerships. Long appreciates the increased stability and potentially higher income that a partnership affords. He says, “A partnership implies that there is a mutual commitment, that we are together for the long run, and that we will work hard to ensure the group’s success,” he says.
“The stakes are high when seeking a partnership,” Long says. “As a partner, you are a lot less likely to change jobs than in another arrangement. Usually, you set yourself up for a long-term relationship that could last years, decades, or perhaps even until retirement,” he says. “It’s a balancing act. You must weigh the risks and benefits.” more »