Meet the Pediatrician who grew from setting up a small clinic to a neonatal center within 6 months

Meet Dr. Shivachand, a pediatrician whose journey from establishing a modest clinic to transforming it into a neonatal center within just six months is truly inspiring. Driven by the desire for greater autonomy in his work, he transitioned from a private clinic to becoming a member of The Doctorpreneur Academy, where he gained the skills and courage to open his own Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

1. Initial Cold Response in Practice

Dr. Shivachand started his journey with a small clinic in Ramchandrapuram. Despite the convenient location just a kilometer from his home, the initial response was disheartening. “I used to get only one or two patients a day,” he recalls. This was particularly challenging as he had started just before the second COVID-19 lockdown, which further limited patient flow.

2. Freelancing During the COVID Pandemic

To make ends meet during this difficult period, Dr. Shivachand freelanced, covering for senior pediatricians who were not practicing during the pandemic. This not only provided him with a source of income but also expanded his network and experience.

3. Market Study in a Rural Setup

Understanding the market was crucial. Dr. Shivachand conducted a thorough study to assess the feasibility of setting up an intensive care unit in Ramchandrapuram. Despite its small population of 50,000, he saw a gap in the provision of intensive pediatric care.

4. Planned Purchase of Must-Have Equipment

Based on his market research, Dr. Shivachand made a strategic decision to invest in essential equipment first. “I categorized equipment into ‘must-have’ and ‘good-to-have’,” he explains. This careful planning under the guidance of The Doctorpreneur Academy ensured that he had the necessary tools to provide quality care without overspending.

5. Persistence with Banks for the Loan

Securing funding was a major hurdle. Without significant assets for collateral or a substantial financial history, convincing banks to approve a loan was challenging. “I met with the bank manager daily for over a month,” says Dr. Shivachand. His persistence paid off, and he eventually secured the necessary funds.

6. Networking at the Time of Inauguration

For the hospital’s inauguration, Dr. Shivachand leveraged local networks. He invited influential community members, including politicians and Panchayat leaders, to the event. This helped spread the word about his new facility and its advanced equipment.

7. Availability 24×7 for Initial Impression

One of the key factors in Dr. Shivachand’s success was his commitment to being available 24/7. “Availability, behavior, and clinical skills are critical,” he says. Being accessible around the clock for emergencies helped him build trust within the community.

8. Handling Difficult Patients

Handling critical cases with transparency and communication was another cornerstone of his practice. Dr. Shivachand made a point of visiting patients multiple times a day and spending significant time with their families, explaining conditions and treatment plans. This approach helped build confidence and trust.

9. Intentional Selection of a Small Town

Choosing Ramchandrapuram, a small town close to his hometown, was a strategic decision. “In a small town, even simple admissions can help break even,” he explains. The lower operational costs and reduced competition made it a viable location for starting his practice.

10. Unique Branding Approach

For marketing, Dr. Shivachand adopted creative yet straightforward strategies. Instead of traditional flyers, he distributed pens with his hospital’s name and contact information to school children. “Templates might be ignored, but pens are useful and keep the hospital’s name in people’s minds,” he says.

Dr. Shivachand’s journey is a testament to the power of persistence, strategic planning, and community engagement. By overcoming initial challenges and leveraging his network, he has successfully established a thriving neonatal center in a small town. His story is an inspiration to aspiring doctorpreneurs everywhere, demonstrating that with the right mindset and support, remarkable achievements are possible.

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