Bernie Salick's Business Is Cancer

Now he's bringing his vision of for-profit clinics to a nonprofit stronghold, New York

Dr. Bernard Salick is an accomplished physician, but his true calling is business. A kidney specialist, Salick parlayed his first medical practice into a string of dialysis centers back in the 1960s. He bought a pony for his three daughters and ended up building one of the largest commercial horse-breeding farms in California. When his middle daughter contracted bone cancer in 1983, Salick stopped practicing medicine and began building a pioneering national chain of cancer clinics under the name Salick Health Care Inc. He sold the business for $480 million in 1995 but continued to run it until last year. "I am incapable of relaxing in the usual ways," he says. "I relax by making deals."

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