Every medical doctor dreams of starting a thriving medical practice. Your medical knowledge and skill applied to assist patients can be both a challenging and exciting endeavor. A medical business boasts solid returns on capital, a well-regulated and government-enforced business environment, and an almost even playing field. On the flip side, a medical company has high investment and starting capital, a high business failure rate, a constant stream of would-be competitors, and a federal regulatory body that enforces strict standards of practice.
Types of medical business Solo Practice
A solo practice gives you the autonomy to run things the way you want. You take on all the responsibility but also get to reap out on all the profits. You may, however, encounter high start-up costs for equipment and advertising and all that and may also have to invest a lot of your time to create a name and reputation for yourself.
A Group Practice
A group practice means that you start with other medical professionals in the same field of specialization as yourself or in different practice areas. You get to share the workload, which reduces burnout and fatigue on you as an individual. You also get to spread out the business risks among yourselves and, of course, get to split the profits.
A medical practice within a hospital network involves working within a set schedule and being within certain employee constraints. While this may sound constricting, you get to enjoy riding on the hospital’s working capital and marketing to boost your presence. You also minimize the risks involved in starting a practice from scratch but get to sacrifice personal autonomy and flexibility.
Setting Up The Needed Equipment and Hiring Staff
Getting equipment and staff can be hectic and stressful. Medical equipment can be expensive. Therefore, it is advisable to start with the basics and work your way up. Consider investing in:
An electronic health record system
Electronic health record (EHR) systems are digital tools for keeping medical records, streamlining communication with other healthcare providers, labs, and prescription orders. EHR systems are also a one-stop system for patient records and histories. A functioning EHR system is also necessary for federal incentive payments.
A practice management system and a medical billing service
A practice management system is integrated with your EHR system to track your revenue flows and front office information and operations. A practice management system enables efficiency and prevents duplication of patient records. You can outsource a billing service. It is advisable to review your pros and cons before deciding on a billing model.
Basic equipment required for your practice
Equipment will vary depending on your practice. It is advisable always to calibrate and service your equipment to offer exceptional patient care. Medical imaging is also important for any medical practice.
To reduce the risks associated with radiation exposure, it is paramount that you invest in lead glass. X-ray glass allows you to monitor the patient during imaging while keeping you safe from radiation. Door lite kits with X-ray safety glass are also a good investment.
It is also imperative to invest in good staff, be it for labs and radiology staff. Invest in an assistant who is friendly and approachable.
Once you decide on the route you want to take and a business model, you need a business plan. A business plan serves as the platform upon which your vision and objectives lie. A business plan is also the document that you use to approach a financial institution to get financial support to start the business.
Once the finances are in check, you then need some basic equipment and systems in place to get you going:
- A location for the practice
- An electronic health record system
- A practice management system
- A medical billing system
- A medical transcription service
- A patient communication and management system
- Basic equipment and devices necessary for your practice
- Staff to help run the medical practice
Acquiring A Location For The Practice
As a rule of thumb, it is advisable to set up your practice in an area with minimal potential competition and a good enough potential client base. Additionally, ensure that the local provides easy accessibility, ample parking, good roads, and most importantly, a place with good security.
It would be best to decide whether you will own the building you practice in; this requires significant start-up capital but may prove beneficial in the long run. You may choose to lease office space to practice. Leasing is more economical but may be expensive to maintain if the business fails to pick.
Whereas setting up your medical business can be a tough nut to crack, this article should help lessen the hustle and give you pointers on where and how to start.