Doctors have gotten a bad rap for being accomplices of big pharma’s goal. They have been accused of selling as much medicine as possible. Even at an ethical expense. Yet ironically the American Medical Association (or AMA) advises that medical practitioners should avoid conducting sales of health products. Especially if their “claims lack scientific validity.” Makes sense in contexts like GPs trying to sell shady diet pills. But it makes less sense for podiatrists who believe slipping some gel inserts into a pair of shoes may help their patients alleviate foot pain. The human body is a unique dynamic machine. It doesn’t always necessarily take elaborate scientific research for a product to be effective. Here are examples of products you can promote in your practice:
General Practitioner: Multivitamins
The average American does not consistently get their five-a-day in assorted fruits and vegetables. Consequently, they can easily become deficient in a cornucopia of micronutrients. Sadly, even those who do get their greens in, are still likely to be nutrient-deficient. We are depleted of nutrients. Why? The soil produce is grown in lacks nutrients. If you take a multivitamin daily that can assist in being nutritionally balanced.
Vitamins are not created equally. Gummy vitamins are palatable. However, they are usually just sugar cubes in disguise. We less easily absorb tablets. Your best bioavailable bet is capsules. Your patients need to have Daily Values (DV %s) best tailored to their nutritional needs. Excessive amounts of certain nutrients do more harm than good.
You can not replace food with a multivitamin. A supplement is not a replacement. Therefore it would be best for a GP to advise their patient to both eat well and take a multivitamin.
Orthodontist: Retainer Cleaner
Braces are a way to correct misaligned teeth. Retainers maintain results and need to be worn. If they are not, the teeth will shift back into misalignment. Retainers have a tendency to get dirty. You can, initially, get out the gunk with a bit of underwater rinsing.
But over time, not even a toothbrush can scrub away the residue that inevitably builds up on the plastic. Offering retainer cleaner at an annual checkup or when the patient needs a new retainer would be an effective way to help sustain your orthodontic practice. This would also ensure your patient’s retainers remain squeaky clean year-round.
Choose retainer cleaners that are both antibacterial and that clean the retainer. Don’t forget to instruct your patient on how to use the cleaner as retainers can easily break if mishandled.
Podiatrist: Custom-Made Compression Socks
Water retention, irregular blood flow, strenuous physical activity, and varicose veins are just a few circumstances that make compression socks a godsend. The swelling and discomfort can be decreased with the right pair. Sometimes a random set bought over the counter at the pharmacy is as useless as taping cotton balls to your ankles.
Patients get the proper foot care they need with custom-made compression socks. The socks also give your practice an extra stream of income. Your patient’s specific circumstances will determine how the socks are made. A flight attendant and someone who has just had surgery will need different pairs of socks. Patients can get custom-made socks tailored to their personal preferences. Burgundy socks? Socks with butterflies on them? They’ve got it!
Unlike a psychiatrist, a psychologist cannot prescribe medication to patients. However, suggesting non-medicinal ways of managing behavior can be a form of non-invasive treatment. This isn’t to say that sniffing a vanilla buttercream candle will cure someone’s depression. Scents can powerfully influence mood. This is due to the relationship between the olfactory nerves, the nervous system, and the brain.
Essential oils and oil diffusers are two products that could be sold individually or in bundles. Offer samples of the scents. Patients can choose the products based on their personal preferences. Certain smells can be therapeutic whereas others are more emotionally triggering.
When you prescribe aromatherapy, like a vitamin, it is meant to be supplemental. It is not a replacement for treatment or medication. It can be a great addition and enhancement to a patient’s life.
Offering bulk-buy options, subscription options, and having sales on products are incentives for patients to not only purchase but continue purchasing the products. If they need the product, why not supply it? It’s convenient, both for you and your patient. And that’s the best kind of business: one that provides contentment for all.