Physician Side Hustles Part 2: Secret Sources of Secondary Income for Physicians

In our article, Physician Side Hustles: Are They Right for Me?, we discussed how secondary sources of income, or “Side Hustles” are becoming more common among physicians. Already popular with Americans as a whole, many doctors are finding that they can work out a way to participate, too. Adding a side hustle comes with added benefits. In addition to making more money, a secondary income for physicians can hedge against changes in the medical industry, create a faster path to financial freedom and help pay down debt.

Whether you are a physician looking to add to your education and professional career, explore a passion, or just make some extra cash, one of the following may be right for you.

Is there a doctor in the house?

You may be surprised at how many people or companies are hungry for your expertise. Starting a blog or a podcast, investing in a company, patenting an invention, or paid medical research—the options for physicians to earn additional income are endless. Let’s explore a few in depth.

Speaking engagements

Are you good at public speaking? Do you have creative, thought-provoking ideas that relate to the medical community? What are some valuable lessons you have learned in your career so far? How could your expertise benefit others in your field? Many doctors pick up paid speaking gigs in the pharmaceutical industry as guest lecturers at conferences and other venues. In fact, pharmaceutical companies are among the best resources for finding paid speaking engagements. Some doctors, particularly those who have clinical or research experience, also find paid work as commencement speakers at medical schools or at professional society meetings. It’s a good idea to put together a list of topics you could cover as a guest speaker, then create outlines you can use to pitch to potential clients. Speaking engagements come with the added benefit of possible travel opportunities.


We’re happy to answer any questions you have about our firm and our processes. Here are answers to some of the questions we receive most frequently.

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If you’re a physician who enjoys teaching, you might like working in education and coaching. Many doctors work part-time as medical school instructors or administrators. Clinical education positions are often part-time, and if you already live or work near a medical school, this might be a perfect fit.

In fact, some medical schools allow physician educators to use an RVU equivalent for teaching time. Some doctors use their professional expertise to branch out into athletic training, life coaching or educating other physicians. Added benefits of teaching include increased access to cutting edge methods and ideas, the formation of new connections with other medical professionals, and the opportunity to mentor young physicians or nurses.

MCAT tutoring

Do you remember when you were studying for the MCAT? There were likely concepts on which you needed clarification, questions that went unanswered, or uncertainties you would have liked resolved. There are many test prep companies that are looking for tutors and mentors who have successfully navigated the MCAT and the medical school application process. Tutors teach not only material and content mastery, but also test-taking tips and strategies. Much of this type of work can be done remotely, and the hours are flexible.

Real estate /start a small business

Finally, if you have an entrepreneurial side, you can invest in real estate or start a small business. Unlike a medical practice, which is based on fee-for-service and volume-based reimbursement, real estate can generate passive, recurring rental income and profits from long-term property value appreciation. Plus, mortgage interest deductions may help you reduce your taxable income. You can start investing in real estate with a small amount of money. By purchasing shares in an REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust), for example, you can take advantage of participation in these companies that own income-generating real estate.

Do you have a skill or service you could offer beyond your medical expertise? Do you play an instrument or create art or another product? Consider listing your services in your community or selling goods online or at a local market. You’ll meet new people, expand your impact, and might find stress relief and increased joy and satisfaction by engaging in a new undertaking.


We are fiduciaries, and it’s not just a word. It’s a binding commitment to put your interests first.

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We understand your path

If you are a physician, a side hustle can make your life more fulfilling and help you stay on top of your career. But it can also be a terrific way to diversify your portfolio while building financial security. Pursuing part-time work away from your principal career might be just the thing to boost your annual income and allow you to feel more flexibility and freedom financially.

At Blankinship & Foster, we understand the financial goals and needs of physicians. We offer portfolio management for physicians and can help build any secondary income for physicians into long-term wealth.

In Part 3, we discuss how a second income source can also be integrated into investing and financial planning, as well as long-term goals such as early retirement.

Disclosure: The opinions expressed within this blog post are as of the date of publication and are provided for informational purposes only. Content will not be updated after publication and should not be considered current after the publication date. All opinions are subject to change without notice, and due to changes in the market or economic conditions may not necessarily come to pass. Nothing contained herein should be construed as a comprehensive statement of the matters discussed, considered investment, financial, legal, or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy or sell any securities, and no investment decision should be made based solely on any information provided herein. Links to third party content are included for convenience only, we do not endorse, sponsor, or recommend any of the third parties or their websites and do not guarantee the adequacy of information contained within their websites.

About Monica Ma

Monica Ma, CFP®, CFA® is an advisor and the chair of the Investment Committee at Blankinship & Foster LLC. She helps clients build sound investment portfolios and develop strategic plans to reach their goals. Since Monica is passionate about sharing her knowledge with women and retirees, she co-leads the firm's Wise Women and Living Wisely Educational Series. Monica is a member of the International Community Foundation's Investment and Finance Committee. She has been living in San Diego since 2008 and enjoys travelling and cooking with her family.

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