Running A Business

24 Healthcare Business Ideas for Entrepreneurs

Mar 16, 2023 • 10+ min read
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      You’ve toyed with the idea of starting a healthcare business, but you might not be sure what business you could start. Even if you have a healthcare business idea, you’re not sure if it would be profitable or have the potential to grow over the next few years. 

      According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S. national healthcare spending grew to $4.3 trillion in 2021. This equaled an average of $12,914 per person, and it accounted for 18.3% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). While a lot of this money was spent with large healthcare organizations, a considerable amount was paid to private healthcare business owners as well. 

      Healthcare businesses are not only the focus of so much spending, but also much more likely to survive and thrive. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 15.6% of healthcare businesses fail in the first year, significantly below the 21% average first-year failure rate across all industries.

      In short, starting a healthcare business is an extremely promising prospect right now. To help you narrow down the direction you could take, we will cover 24 healthcare business ideas—any of which you could start executing over the next few weeks.

      Let’s dive in.

      YearHealthcare failure rateOverall failure rate

      Based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Data of survival rates of businesses started in 2017.

      Growth and cost comparison.

      Healthcare business growth and cost comparison.

      There are multiple factors to consider when choosing which type of healthcare business you want to start, including your own expertise and personal interests. The following chart gives you an overview of the estimated market size, compound annual growth rate (CAGR), and startup costs for common business types within the healthcare industry. Keep in mind that costs can vary considerably, depending on how you set up your business and where you are located.

      Business typeMarket sizeCAGR (Next 8-10 years)Average startup cost
      Medical Billing Outsourcing11.1 billion12% (2022-2030)$12,272
      Primary Care Physician260 billion3.2%$70,000-$100,000
      Home Health336 billion7.93%Private Pay: $40,000 to $80,000. Licensed Home Health non-Medicare agency: $60,000 to $100,000. Medicare Certified agency:  $150,000 to $350,000
      Massage Therapy54.6 billion8.6% (2022-2032)$18,308
      Medical Transcription19.8 billion6.1%$2000-$10,000
      Medical Equipment59.7 billion5.7%$13,936
      Nurse Concierge Service547.8 billion9.2%$18,308
      Infusion Services4.6 billion7.3%$6000-$20,000
      Assisted Living467 billion5.9%Varies based on size and state requirements
      Independent Retail Pharmacy1009 billion4.8%$500,000
      Medical Waste Handling21 billion5.4$19,267
      Sources Below
      Healthcare business ideas.

      24 healthcare business ideas.

      Read on to learn more about individual healthcare business ideas.

      1. Telehealth software solutions.

      At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth services rose to the forefront. Now, although many healthcare practices have returned to seeing patients in person, at least 37% of U.S. adults continue to use telehealth services. This is where your telehealth software solution could come in.

      An app or software that enhances the telehealth experience is always welcome in the market. This may include tools that allow healthcare providers, such as doctors and nurse practitioners, to monitor their patients whom they are serving remotely or even virtual reality telehealth solutions.

      2. Medical equipment rental and maintenance service.

      Medical equipment is expensive. Renting can be a cost-effective way for some families to get a piece of medical equipment their loved one needs. With a medical equipment rental service, you could start to fill this gap, connecting patients in need with the right devices. In addition to renting equipment, your business may also provide certified technicians and engineers to maintain the equipment and carry out repairs.

      3. Nurse concierge service.

      If you’re an experienced nurse who is looking for a change of scenery beyond bedside nursing, you could consider concierge nursing. Concierge nursing is private nursing and it can span a variety of patient types. For example, if you have pediatric nursing experience, your concierge nurse business could focus on caring for children. Other nurse concierge services specialize in providing care services for high-income clientele.

      With a host of niches to be filled with a concierge nursing business, your possibilities are endless. 

      4. Medical staffing agency.

      In the U.S., it can take up to 90 days to fill a vacant registered nurse role. Meanwhile, many hospitals are understaffed and need talent quickly to fill the need. Medical staffing agencies act as matchmakers between professional medical professionals and the health organizations that need them. 

      They can be critical in shortening this long timeline and create a win-win scenario for both sides. The medical professional avoids the burden of applying with 10 or 15 employers to find the perfect role. Once they apply with a medical staffing agency, the agency does the work of finding roles to suit the professional’s needs. In turn, the hospital organization benefits by gaining access to vetted professionals and filling staff shortages faster. 

      5. Sole practice business.

      If you’re a licensed healthcare professional who can practice independently, starting a sole practice such as your own medical, dental, optometry, chiropractic, or physical therapy practice may be the most logical business for you to start. 

      6. Medical billing service.

      Effective billing is the lifeblood of any health practice. While bigger institutions may have their own internal billing departments, smaller healthcare businesses and medical practices often depend heavily on medical billing services to keep the lights on. If you’re thinking about starting a medical billing services company, you will always find high demand in the marketplace.

      7. Home healthcare agency/homecare agency.

      Medical home health agencies offer nursing care to seniors, people recovering from surgery or a severe illness, or for people who are on hospice/end-of-life care. Home healthcare professionals may also come into private homes to help disabled adults with their long-term medical needs. Non-medical home care agencies help a wide range of clients (including the elderly and disabled adults) with activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing up, and companion care.

      8. Massage therapy

      As a massage therapist, you can break out on your own and start a business. Depending on where you live, this might mean investing in proper licensing. In most jurisdictions, you cannot start a massage therapy business unless you are a licensed massage therapist. Regardless, many massage therapists are able to find high demand for their services and make a strong income serving their clients.

      9. Outpatient substance abuse management.

      For people trying to overcome an addiction to drugs or alcohol, getting the right medications, counseling, and tools during their recovery period is crucial. For those who may want or need to do this outside of a residential recovery center, outpatient addiction and management recovery services are crucial. If you have training and specializations in mental health and substance abuse care, you could start such a business. This can be done from an office or even remotely. 

      10. Medical supply courier services.

      Medical supply courier services (sometimes called health logistics services) deliver medical equipment to homes, hospitals, and medical practices. Running a medical supply courier service requires that you know how to handle and safely transport medical equipment and supplies. In some states, starting a medical supply courier service will require that you have a pharmacy degree.

      11. Drug testing business.

      The U.S. Department of Transportation requires certain safety-sensitive employees to undergo drug testing. Moreover, many public and private companies require drug testing as part of their pre-employment and onboarding processes. In addition, drug testing may also be needed in certain legal cases. All of this points to a massive market for drug testing services and a potentially lucrative business idea for nurses (RNs and LPNs) and doctors. 

      12. Infusion services

      For patients who have been discharged from the hospital but still need medications to be infused into their bodies via an intravenous (IV) line while they recover at home, infusion service businesses are critical.

      Infusion service companies are sometimes based in an office, where patients come in weekly or monthly to receive their medication. Others are run via a mobile infusion service that attends to people in their homes.

      13. Medical apparel sales.

      Whether it’s a pair of scrubs or a white coat or comfy shoes for medical professionals who stand and walk all day, medical professionals need their uniforms. You could manufacture your own scrubs or it is possible for you to wholesale and put your private label on medical apparel.

      14. Medical waste handling.

      When it comes to the handling of medical waste, like used syringes, needles, tubing, and soiled wound dressings, federal and state regulations abound. To stay on the right side of these regulations, hospitals and practices of every size need reliable medical waste management services, opening yet another potentially profitable business opportunity. 

      15. Medical laundry services.

      Besides handling medical waste, hospitals often need professional laundering services to take care of bedding, hospital gowns, and hospital-provided attire like surgical scrubs. Your medical laundry services business could meet this need and provide a solid income at the same time.

      16. Assisted-living services.

      Assisted-living services provide residential services to seniors. Seniors who live in an assisted living facility may do a lot for themselves, but still need help with daily living activities like bathing, grooming, and mobility. Assisted living services may also provide health-related services like nursing care and medication assistance.

      17. Senior day care center.

      Instead of opting for an assisted living community or senior community, more and more elders are choosing to age in place, living at home for the rest of their remaining years. Other seniors may also live with adult children or caregivers who have to go to work during the day.

      To stay safe and to have people to socialize with during the day, these elders may opt to go to a senior daycare center, where they can receive professional care and assistance with their medications, as well as participate in social activities.

      18. Medical transcription service.

      Medical transcriptionists transcribe recordings made by doctors, nurses, and other medical workers into legible medical records, including notes from patient examinations and discharge reports. They might also review documents for errors, so that facilities can keep accurate records.

      While some hospitals and medical practices may have their own in-house medical transcriptionists, there are other organizations that rely on external medical transcription services.

      Legal nurse consultants are registered nurses who have further training that allows them to be assets to attorneys and the legal system. For instance, when there is a malpractice, worker’s compensation, or personal injury lawsuit, attorneys may depend on a legal nurse consultant’s background in the healthcare system and medical science to help build their case. As a legal nurse consultant, you would operate independently. If you have extensive experience in a particular nursing field (e.g., oncology), starting your own legal nurse consultancy that serves that vertical can be a great business. 

      20. Hydration therapy business.

      This business can be similar to the infusion services idea mentioned above. But while infusion services often focus on delivering medication for health conditions, hydration therapy is a simple treatment that delivers fluids and electrolytes (and sometimes, medication), directly into a person’s bloodstream through an IV line.

      In most states in the U.S., licensed healthcare professionals, including medical doctors, nurse practitioners, and nurses, can start a hydration therapy business.

      21. In-home physical and occupational therapy services.

      Your in-home physical therapy and occupational therapy business could help seniors, people with disabilities, or individuals recovering from an illness or accident. Like some of the private care businesses mentioned already, this kind of business allows patients to receive one-to-one care in the comfort of their homes.

      22. Autism support services.

      Autism support service businesses can provide personal or group support services to individuals on the autism spectrum. Autism support businesses may provide a host of services, including applied behavioral therapy, speech, and occupational therapy services.

      23. Retail pharmacy store.

      Don’t let big chain pharmacy stores intimidate you. If you have the proper education and licensing to be a pharmacist, you can still make money as an independent pharmacy store owner. 

      24. Non-emergency medical transportation.

      Non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) services help patients get to their healthcare appointments on time. While the guidelines differ from state to state for starting your NEMT business, it is likely you will need basic training in CPR and first aid. If your NEMT business transports people who use wheelchairs, you might also need special training on how to securely transport these individuals.

      Execute your healthcare business idea today.

      While several of these businesses require you to have a specific healthcare degree in order to start, there are others on this list that don’t require degrees. And in almost each case, instead of reinventing the wheel, you will be starting a tried-and-tested business. 

      Forty-one percent of healthcare businesses fail by their fifth year. There are various reasons why this may happen. But often, a lack of funding to support the business is one of those reasons. Learn how you could get the money you need to fund your healthcare practice or get the medical equipment you need to start today.

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      About the author
      Gertrude Nonterah

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