Specialized Surgery to General Practice: Why Podiatrists Decide to Make the Switch

Thinking of changing the focus of your podiatry practice? The decision to make the switch from a surgical clinic to a general practice (one that provides routine foot care) is not a simple one.

There are many variables to consider before changing the focus of your clinic. To make your decision-making process a little easier, we’ve compiled some insights we’ve gathered over the years.

Here are the top 5 reasons podiatrists decide to convert their specialized surgery clinic into a general practice:

Changing demographics need routine foot care

When you first opened your clinic, you likely chose the location based on a study of what age distribution it needed to serve, but neighborhoods change over time. For example, younger neighborhoods now have a larger component of older constituents with different needs, like routine care of callus and nail ailments.

Appeal to a wider audience with a general practice

Regardless of the location of the podiatry clinic and the surrounding age demographics, routine, non-surgical care is normally needed by a larger number of people. As such, podiatrists can cast a wider net and appeal to a larger patient-base with a general practice than with a specialized surgery clinic.

Surgeries are becoming more difficult to perform

Patients aren’t the only ones who age over time. Doctors, too, often experience a decrease in their stamina as they get older. Many podiatrists who liked performing surgeries when they were younger may discover the same surgical procedures feel more physically demanding as they get older.

The specialized podiatrist’s workday never ends

For podiatrists operating a specialized surgery clinic, many find the workday to be especially strenuous and worry about complications even while at home. Some patients will call their doctor after hours if they are experiencing pain or have questions related to their surgery.

High-risk associated with podiatry surgeries

A surgical practice has higher operating costs, greater risk of complications, higher insurance premiums, and an increased risk of liability. Many podiatrists find that making the transition to a general practice clinic significantly reduces the day-to-day risk and consequently, is less stressful overall.