Dr. Carey Nease's goal is to impact the lives of his patients in a way that they are transformed, but not different.
Name: Carey Nease, MD
Clinic: Southern Surgical Arts
Location: Chattanooga, TN
That's interesting: Dr. Nease is a Fellowship Director of the American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery and trains surgeons from around the country the latest techniques in cosmetic surgery. The fellowship is a one-year training program open to current ABMS-certified general surgeons, plastic surgeons and head and neck surgeons. He is also a board-examiner and trustee of the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery and trains other surgeons around the United States in SmartLipo and Affirm fractionated CO2 laser resurfacing.
Why did you choose to be a cosmetic surgeon?
I am a musician and also an artist. I also came from a family who had careers in medicine. When I was deciding what I wanted my career to be, cosmetic surgery blended the two together.
Can you tell us more about your clinic?
We perform all of our procedures in one of three accredited, state-of-the-art facilities. In Calhoun, GA, we own an AAAHC-accredited facility. We also operate in the Grandview Medical Center in Jasper, TN, and the Physician’s Surgery Center near Parkridge East Hospital in Chattanooga, both accredited by The Joint Commission.
We consult with patients, before and after surgery, in both our Calhoun and Chattanooga offices.
Can you give us some insight into how you hire and manage your staff?
We are committed to hiring professionals interested in serving our patients. We have three M.B.As on staff and 12 of the 15 staff members had at least a 4-year college education. We compensate our staff depending on the type of job they have. However, we have team goals to ensure we keep the ultimate goal in mind. We are constantly reviewing compensation policies to provide competitive wages to our staff and to also motivate them to sell more.
Tell us more about the laser technologies in your practice.
Laser and IPL both play a part in our practice, but we rely primarily on laser technology for skin rejuvenation and hair removal. Purchases of this type of technology are based on the expected effectiveness of the machine. We expect significant results with low chance of a complication. So we research the technology for months in advance before deciding to add it to our practice. currently we like the Candela GentleMax Pro for hair removal on all skin types. We also really like the Candela VBeam for scars, vascular lesions and rosacea. The Cynosure Affirm CO2 is our preferred laser for skin resurfacing and also the Sciton Erbium laser works well for more mild treatments.
How do you advertise your clinic?
Because we are in the growth phase of our practice, we market aggressively in Chattanooga, TN, North Georgia and North Alabama. We use a variety of marketing and communication techniques. They include traditional advertising such as billboards, print media, radio and television commercials. We also employ digital media to market on the internet and to build loyalty with patient with social media.
We have tried direct mail and the yellow pages and believe that these tactics can work but they are expensive and do not produce a return on investment.
Our favorite types of marketing, which produce the largest return on investment is Internet portals, Pay Per Click and Blush Magazine in Chattanooga. We also love Facebook for its ability to build loyalty with our current and prospective patients.
Our marketing efforts are reviewed quarterly and yearly. We analyze the return on investment of each marketing tactic and make changes to ensure it provides a return.
What treatments or services generate the most revenue in your clinic?
Our surgical services are the most profitable in our practice. However, we understand that our medical spa and injectables are “feeders” to the surgical services. To ignore them would potentially eliminate many potential patients in the future.
We are always looking at new technology and identifying if it is safe for our patients and if it can produce a return on investment.
What have you learned from your patients?
I have learned that most patients are reasonable and just want to look younger, more refreshed and match how they feel. I did have an 85 year old patient come in and want a cosmetic surgical procedure because she said that she felt like she was 50!
What's the best advice you can offer to physicians who want to venture in cosmetic medicine?
I would strongly suggest that a cosmetic surgeon should focus on those procedures that they feel most comfortable performing and those that they enjoy the most. Do not try to be a master of everything, rather become proficient in several procedures/areas and stick with them. You will likely deliver better outcomes for your patients and do it more safely.
About: Dr. Carey Nease is certified by the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery, the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and American Board of Otolaryngology (Head and Neck Surgery). His other memberships and associations include: American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery, American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, American Board of Otolaryngology, American Society of Laser Medicine and Surgery, Hamilton County Medical Society and the Tennessee Medical Association.
This interview is part of a series of interviews of physicians running medical spas, laser clinics and cosmetic surgery centers. If you'd like to be interviewed, just contact us.