The Side Hustle: Supplement Your Medical Career through Entrepreneurship


For a long career, make medicine a hobby. 

What do I mean by that? As most physicians know, the world of medicine is changing. Despite being high-income earners, the finances of being a doctor are quickly reaching an unsustainable position. For one thing, student loan debt is on the rise and setting us behind, averaging $250k.


Getting out of that financial hole has become more difficult with reimbursements decreasing by as much as 10-20% each year. Then there’s our decline in autonomy—from administrative micromanagement to burnout to lack of job security. The biggest worry is often losing our jobs altogether. 

Medicine wasn’t what it once was, that pathway to security and financial freedom we had hoped for. 

But what if you could practice your medical career on your own terms? What if you weren’t fighting for extra shifts to make ends meet, and instead choosing when and where you wanted to work? What if you could work for the pleasure of being a doctor rather than being caught up in the financial hamster wheel? 


If you are feeling burnout, financial stress, or lack of autonomy, supplement your career through a side hustle—through entrepreneurship. Not only can you achieve your financial goals; but it may also, provide a sense of fulfillment, purpose, and control to practice medicine, like a hobby, on your own terms for as long as you want.

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Enter the Side Hustle

The notion of a “side hustle” or “side gig” is growing in acceptance among the physician community. To qualify as a side hustle, it must be something that you can initially start while continuing your day job as a physician. 

Is it simple to find success when looking for a side hustle? Ultimately, I believe that side hustles start with having the right attitude. If your determination is strong enough, you should succeed. Let’s not forget, your drive was strong enough for you to become a physician, so you have plenty already. 


Side hustles are not for everyone. But it’s also true that everyone can have one. In my opinion, many people who would otherwise be successful never pursue entrepreneurship because of limiting beliefs standing in their way. As I’ve previously written about, there are plenty of obstacles, real and mental, that you may have to overcome along the way.

The most pervasive is feeling like we don’t have enough time. When we work 50-80 hours a week, it can certainly feel that way. But if you do a time inventory and outsource your work, you can find plenty of time to pursue your entrepreneurial interests. 

Others I talk to feel like they lack experience and aren’t enough of an expert. The truth is many successful business owners had little-to-no expertise before starting. They figure things out as they go. Because doctors are some of the best students in the world, I have faith you can pick things up quickly. 

By nature, physicians are risk-averse people, and the other major obstacle that stands in their way is “minimizing risk” by never starting. However, the risk of inaction likely outweighs every other risk, since not trying at all won’t secure the future of your dreams.

If you think having a side hustle can make a positive difference in your life, you have to ask yourself this: Are you letting obstacles and roadblocks get in your way? If so, identify them, overcome them, and enter the side hustle. You’ll be glad you did.

#76 How To Find Your Side Hustle, ft. Dr. Peter Kim

Side Hustle Options for Physicians

There are many opportunities to create and grow a business or supplement your annual salary through freelance work or self-employment. That’s good because, from what I’ve seen, physicians tend to have a large variety of interests. 

Want to make child-safe dishware? Go out and do it. Want to be a freelance medical writer? Give it a go. Want to become a YouTube influencer in the medical field? I believe in you. Do you want to invest in real estate? I’ve got your back. Want to invent revolutionary medical equipment? Don’t doubt your abilities. There are countless options tailored specifically to your interests and passions, and they don’t have to be relegated to medicine. 

Here is a non-exhaustive list of side hustles doctors can explore to supplement their income. 

Non-Clinical Work Using Your Medical Degree

  • Retail consulting, such as an advisor for a retail or cosmetics company
  • Physician advisor
  • Starting a remote, non-clinical telehealth service company
  • Expert witness
  • Chart/Utilization review
  • Review health insurance claims or disability insurance evaluation


  • Write a book or eBook
  • Start a blog or podcast
  • Create an online course
  • Medical expert or Social Media Influencer
  • Film/TV/Media consultant
  • Start a YouTube channel
  • Coach athletes on training and nutrition 
  • Weight loss education
  • Health and wellness education

Real Estate

  • Invest in direct ownership of rental property
  • Invest in private equity real estate funds
  • Rent out your property through Airbnb
  • Invest in tax liens
  • Get your real estate license


  • Purchase a franchise
  • Direct to consumer products: Start a company around a product you’ve designed
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Create an online store
  • Create an invention and patent it
  • Create an app
  • Patent an idea for a medical device
  • Become a freelance editor for medical journals
  • Start a medi spa
  • Start an aesthetics clinic
  • Start an after-hours private practice
  • Create your own skincare line

Don’t miss the Leverage & Growth Summit THIS WEEK, a unique event tailored for physicians exploring entrepreneurial and growth opportunities beyond traditional clinical roles. It’s an enriching platform offering inspiring keynotes from successful physician entrepreneurs, interactive workshops on various fields like digital health and investment, invaluable networking with like-minded professionals, and insightful panel discussions on healthcare trends.

This summit isn’t just a conference; it’s a movement towards expanding your professional horizons, empowering your entrepreneurial spirit, and connecting with pioneers reshaping healthcare. Mark your calendars for a transformative experience that promises to redefine the intersection of medicine and entrepreneurship. 

Set Up Your Side Hustle and Live Life on Your Own Terms

Becoming an entrepreneur can be as easy as acquiring a business license or a website domain. But if you start a business that relies on getting the word out to grow a client list, things can be a lot more challenging. Your needs will change depending on your side hustle, but if you’re willing to put in the effort and take action, you can grow your side hustle into something more than just supplemental income. 

Could your side hustle create a work-life balance in your medical career? Could your side-hustle income eventually replace your physician income? Will it grow into many more side hustles (and many more streams of income)? Those things are up to you.

Depending on what your goals are, the upside could be tremendous. In any case, side hustles allow us to live life on our own terms

Regardless of your path, we here at Passive Income MD are here to support you along your journey to financial freedom. Join one of our many communities and visit one of our many annual events to connect with thousands of like-minded individuals who can offer valuable insights on how to best approach your entrepreneurial ideas. 

Until then, stay inspired to pursue your side hustle!

Peter Kim, MD is the founder of Passive Income MD, the creator of Passive Real Estate Academy, and offers weekly education through his Monday podcast, the Passive Income MD Podcast. Join our community at the Passive Income Doc Facebook Group.

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