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April 1998

Are We Consultants or Peddlers?

Arch Dermatol. 1998;134(4):508-509. doi:

We are being urged to sell cosmetics. Displays at meetings, advertisements in our journals, and some practice management newsletters are urging us to peddle cosmetics in our office. "Office dispensing," as it is called, is to be our financial salvation in these times of managed care and starvation-fee schedules. Why let others reap the profits from the huge markup of cosmetics?

Here is a source of ready cash, little malpractice risk, and no brainwork. Firms are happy to provide displays and aid your start. You can have the labels customized to imply that you are responsible for the formulations of these wonderful products. Furthermore, while enriching yourself, you are actually providing a service to patients! They can get their special moisturizers, cleansers, body lotions, etc, as they leave your office, thus saving them a trip to Macy's or the local drug store. They will be assured of buying safe and appropriate products. You are meeting the needs of sophisticated patients with products incorporating the latest technology. It is a win-win situation for both dermatologists and patients.

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