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Old 14-12-2008, 21:45   #16
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I wonder though, why haven't I seen more suggestions for work related to cruising like scuba diving for hull cleaning and inspection, or sail repair
The guy that cleans my hull every 2 weeks charges US$6 per go. There are 40 boats here and he seems to be doing about 10 of them. $120 a month is about startvation wages.

The sailmaker here repaired a 4 foot rip in my genny last week for US$30.

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Also, why not a small shipping business to islands in the S. Pacific that have nothing? Start a small route between a few islands stocking up in Tahiti or something along these lines...
Fedex goes just about everywhere. 2 weeks ago my new traveller arrived. The shipping cost was the same to California or Singapore. The truck that dropped of the package was a local contractor in an unmarked van.

Of course smuggling is a different story.

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I'd like to hear some thoughts on the above including the floating Dr. idea.
Thanks!
If you are a physician consider a gig with one of the emergency services outfits. My wife is a recruiter for ISOS. A rig tow doctor can make $1,000 per day for 30 days work. That's a nice kitty topper.
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Old 14-12-2008, 23:10   #17
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Telemedicine is utterly ripe with potential. It is (and has) been exploding with growth.
Bbbbb, buhh, buhh, bann, bann, bann ... Baaaannnddwwwiiiiidth.
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Old 15-12-2008, 05:00   #18
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Did they say how much they would pay? I would venture not much if anything at all. That was the original posters question, could he make money as a traveling doctor on his boat.
You could probably treat the locals for free, that doesnt mean you would have to treat the mega rich that frequent the Islands equally. The Islanders usually have two prices for everything, one for locals one for tourists.
the main thing is you would have an in to paradise ,probably a free slip and the appreciation of the locals.
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Old 15-12-2008, 08:52   #19
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Bbbbb, buhh, buhh, bann, bann, bann ... Baaaannnddwwwiiiiidth.
Maren

I was not suggesting he telemed from a boat. (And the bandwidth for cam chat is not all that much). I am suggesting that an MD in the right clinical area or a PhD can position themselves (or market themselves) as a trainer in interventions that are telemed (and I incorporate net interventions under that heading) based. I have started seeing an occasional patient via yahoo chat/cam. It is going to happen and that means standards of care are going to be set and that means operationalizing proceedures for reimbursement and that means insurance companies are going to want evidence based studies and that means Docs of all types can be workig on this stuff whereever in the world.

Telemed and net based interventions are taking off -- and studies are showing that some disorders actually have a good recovery rate with net based interventions. No face to face with a provider. None. This research is not lost on insurance companies. He wants to roam the world with his degree in medicine, then I think a reasonable financial tool is to develop this expertise at this early stage of his career.

And I firmly believe that technology will always catch up with dreams. It always has so far. I just do not see the bandwidth issue as an issue.
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Old 15-12-2008, 13:55   #20
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"Actually I am in medical school, and eventually my dream is to have a sailing Doctors office."
MK, I'd say you have a serious conflict there. You will need to be licensed (medical license and work license) and probably insured (wait till the insurer hears you want to practice "globally" without a real office) and that's going to conflict with a cruising lifestyle.

OTOH, if you want to simply live afloat and establish a floating practice, say, in the Maine Islands, or a sttrip of coastal towns in one state...you could probably "ride circuit" that way and do very well IF there were no competing local doctors and offices.

I's say you need to first find "areas without medical care" and then find which areas are ones you'd care to ride circuit (in your boat) in. But for long-term cruising....That's gonna be a real hard one. In some places the patients will pay you with a fish, or a chicken. And then the gendarmes will come to fine you, in cash, for not having your working papers. MOST of the world very jealously guards who is allowed to work, stay, and play in their sandboxes.

Naybe you could put together a proposal for Doctors Without Borders or some other international group (who know how to deal with papers) and instead of doing it all yourself, join a progrma that already does inland river tours, coastal tours, something like that?
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Old 17-12-2008, 16:01   #21
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I am a physician that has built up a practice and i am looking forward to the (semi)retired state. I have thought about the above scenario, and I have to agree that the places I have cruised/traveled outside of Europe/USA would probably look at you making a living in a poor light. That said:
1. I have wondered about living in a area full of cruisers- could you open a small practice and treat other cruisers? You could trade for services or a small amount of $$ between you. I have seen medical services among expats do well in Northern Mexico (for example)
2. What I think might really work is doing locums up and down the eastern seaboard and the gulf coast. Although you would have to keep a few licenses, you could specialize in an area like Florida, and then take off when they don't need you. I may try this if my wife will put up with it.
3. Finally, a physician job really isn't that bad. I can save for 3 years cruising for every one year working, and that is after supporting a wife and kids going to college. You might just try working for a while...
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Old 17-12-2008, 17:32   #22
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I like your idea's mv. How long would it take to develop that with no medical background.

How hard is it to get a decent internet connection on two week passages. Would you have to use sat phones,satellite dish or the modems you hook up to you vhf.
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Old 25-02-2009, 04:04   #23
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When I was 'much' younger I used to backpack around the Med during the summers picking up work when and where I could. One of my favorites was selling icecream on the tourist beaches for a local manufacturer (totally illegal without a permit but...) we were allocated a certain amount of cones and icecream and were allowed to supplement this with all the cold drinks we could carry which we bought ourselves in the supermarket for 3F and sold for 10F. My plan is to buy a small icecream cart which can be dismantled and stowed and charged on the boat and work it during the summer while living on board. In most countries you can eventually get through the red tape and get a street vendors permit and any hygene certificated needed, especially if you know someone living in the country. I have family living in Portugal who would be willing and able to store a small cart or three for me during the winter months (hey if I can get a couple of backpackers working another couple of carts for a small wage )
I spent a week last summer researching, just sitting watching a small ice cream cart sell a minimim of 2 icecreams a minute in the peak period for 3 each - just over 4 profit per minute. there may be lots of competition around the main busy tourist beaches but mostly the number of sellers is controlled by the number of permits issued.

Another variation is the Iced Slushie machines which are smaller and easier to stow but run out faster and take a little time to clean and freeze the next batch, but you can hire yourself out for parties and make instant Margaritas.

I still haven't decided on what boat I want , I've got several in the 30 to 50k price range shortlisted and hope to make a decision within a few months, but I'm more than fed up with the british weather, economy, unemployment, interest rates etc etc etc...... but if the worst comes to the worst I can live for months at a time on nothing but a fishing line having a boat to live on will actually be an improvement for me.
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Old 25-02-2009, 08:40   #24
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Over the years we've encountered many physicians in the cruising fleet (SouthPacific area). They have been generally divided into two categories: those who hid their capabilities, not wanting to "get involved", and those who were always willing to help out. The latter would treat locals or fellow yotties as required, and in all these years we have NEVER heard of one of these good folks taking money. NEVER! It just isn't the way things work within the cruising community, and this willingness to share is one of the reasons we are still cruising after 23 years. Hoping to finance one's cruise by working for either other yotties or the third-world locals is not a very realistic plan, no matter what your skills are.

ON the other hand, there is a great need for doctors in outback Australia...

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Gladstone, Qld, Oz
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Old 25-02-2009, 08:57   #25
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Apart from the legal issues I think you will find that in developing countries where you may want to be cruising doctors aren't making much money. The patients might be so poor you would probably be ashamed to accept payment from them when they offer your fees in chickens or maybe a goat.
Seriously, in most countries jobs are protected for the locals, all sorts of work permits are reqired and usually hard to obtain.
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Old 25-02-2009, 14:40   #26
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I don't know about the med, but in most of the US if you tried to just show up with a pushcart the other vendors (already on that "route") would probably beat you to a bloody pulp for entering their turf. And that's regardless of how quickly the local police showed up to confiscate your cart (it goes away forever) if you don't have the peddler's license and other paperwork required.

Granted we turn a blind eye to illegal day laborers and many other things, but I'd be surprised if most touristy beaches turned a blind eye to vendors--because they can make a lot of profit from them. You might want to take a tax-deductible business trip to study that local economy before you invested in a cart.<G>
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Old 26-02-2009, 05:08   #27
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I don't know about the med, but in most of the US if you tried to just show up with a pushcart the other vendors (already on that "route") would probably beat you to a bloody pulp for entering their turf. .<G>
Oh I agree, in most places you can't just turn up without risking getting beat up or cart confiscated, when I sold as a teenager we were selling for a local, so we had no problem with the other local vendors, who also had backpackers selling for them. But if you go through the red tape you can get a legitimate pitch, new resorts appear in the med every year and current ones expand which makes room for new pitches - trick is to get in with the council and book one without paying 'silly' prices. While researching and making enquiries I was offered exclusive right to 'A Street' in a popular Portugese holiday resort for 1,000 for the season. I know a couple of street vendors and for a good pitch at an event in the UK they can pay up upwards of 1,000 A DAY!!! (which also explains why food is often double or triple the normal price at closed events)
In the South of France I've been offered a sub lease on a pitch by someone I used to work for - I use my cart, sell his brand (which he produces) and I make 30% more profet than his regular sellers as well has being able to carry more stock and not run out so soon.

All that said.... the ice cream idea IS going to tie me down :-\ so bang goes the freedom I crave. Might suit someone who is prepared to book a pitch at the end of one season, ready to stay in one place from the start to end of the next season - which isn't what I want.
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Old 08-05-2011, 15:08   #28
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Re: Floating Doctor's Office?

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Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
I am a physician that has built up a practice and i am looking forward to the (semi)retired state. I have thought about the above scenario, and I have to agree that the places I have cruised/traveled outside of Europe/USA would probably look at you making a living in a poor light. That said:
1. I have wondered about living in a area full of cruisers- could you open a small practice and treat other cruisers? You could trade for services or a small amount of $$ between you. I have seen medical services among expats do well in Northern Mexico (for example)
2. What I think might really work is doing locums up and down the eastern seaboard and the gulf coast. Although you would have to keep a few licenses, you could specialize in an area like Florida, and then take off when they don't need you. I may try this if my wife will put up with it.
3. Finally, a physician job really isn't that bad. I can save for 3 years cruising for every one year working, and that is after supporting a wife and kids going to college. You might just try working for a while...
As a physician who spends a lot of time sailing in the Caribbean I can tell you from personal experience that there are a lot of islands where it is very easy to get jobs working in various clinics, then you simply live on your boat on different islands. They are very appreciative of your services and although reimbursement is not on par with the states you can certainly do quite well. Of course you must be qualified which means documentation of a residency with or without Board Certification. And it does take some time to get through their medical beaurarcy but the states are not much different. I keep my job in the states but also work in the islands which is ideal for me. My only problem is that I never want to leave the islands but due to financial constraints cannot stay only in the Caribbean. So.......I rack up a lot of frequent flier miles but I get to do what I love. By the way I have treated many fellow sailors including suturing their wounds but would never charge for my services.
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Old 16-05-2011, 13:53   #29
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Re: Floating Doctor's Office ?

I remember hearing once about a floating dental clinic in Alaska. Dentist and his wife/hygienist were often called upon for other minor medical matters such as suturing. Possible you could be sponsored by the Peace Corps or AmeriCorps? Volunteers who are mobile and have their own housing are popular in some positions. In fact there are groups of RVers who travel just to help groups such as Habitat for Humanity. You might cruise, say, the Intracoastal Waterway or Mississippi system under the aegis of the right group.
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Old 16-05-2011, 14:31   #30
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Re: Floating Doctor's Office ?

I believe the denist you are referring to had a custom built trawler complete with X-ray and dental chair and all the necessary equipment of a small office installed. It was truly a design in perfect utilization of the main salon. All of the equipment was designed to be stored behind teak doors. I wish I could remember the name of the dentist, as I am sure he spent many days with the designer on the interior inorder to make this wonderful dream a practical and useful cruiser. I believed that in the summer he would travel to many of the smaller towns and island of Alaska and bring need care to those who normally would not have access to a dentist. If anyone knows his name or where he is now please post.
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