Are you a recent med school grad looking to start your own practice to serve the people in your community? Perhaps you’ve had some experience working in hospitals and you’re ready to step out on your own? Either way, starting a medical practice of your own can be exciting. You get to call all the shots while focusing on areas of medicine closest to your passion. Running a medical practice, however, requires several steps and detailed planning. If you think you have what it takes, continue reading for advice on getting started.
What’s The Cost?
The first thing you have to ask yourself is how much this medical practice is going to cost. You’ll be responsible for handling everything from the lease and utilities to the equipment and staff. Determine how much you’ll need to get started and what your monthly expenses will be. Chances are you’ll need to obtain a business loan or alternative loan to get your practice off the ground.
In order to legally practice medicine, you’ll be required to obtain certain licenses. This includes your medical license, DEA registration, laboratory license, dispensing physician registration, an NPI number, and a state-based license.
Now you need to find the perfect location to set up your medical practice. As you search for available properties, you want to look for areas where there is lots of traffic but few medical practices already in existence. You’ll also want to consider the space, layout, and functionality of the space to ensure it can comfortably house your patients, staff, and medical equipment. Lastly, you want to search for properties that fit in your budget. Remember, until you start generating revenue, it will be up to you to cover the costs of managing the medical practice.
Go Through the Credentialing Process
If you’re going to accept medical insurance from your patients, you’ll need to work out a contract with insurance companies. Most have a credentialing process you’ll have to pass. This will include an educational, background, and financial check. You’ll also need to agree to a payment arrangement between you and the insurance provider.
Before you start seeing patients you’ll need to make sure you have your own insurance coverage. This includes general liability and medical malpractice insurance. Such policies protect you in the event that your practice is sued by a patient.
Hire a Team
No medical practice can be successful without a great team of support. This includes nurses, administrative assistants, nurse practitioners, medical billing staff, and more. While some of these roles you may be able to find a suitable applicant to fill the position, others may be more complicated or expensive. For example, it may be best to outsource your calls to a bilingual answering service as trying to hire multiple customer service reps in-house may be expensive.
Purchase Your Equipment and Supplies
Next on the agenda would be purchasing your medical equipment and supplies. Depending on what type of practice you have, you’ll need x-ray or MRI machines, medical lights, computers, laptops, desks, office furniture, patient tables, scales, first-aid supplies, medication, and more. Create a list of what you need and do research on top medical equipment and supply companies to determine who can provide you with the best equipment at an affordable price.
When looking for equipment and supplies, don’t forget your software. You’ll need to have software for managing patient accounts, scheduling, accounting, employee management, and other office systems.
Advertise Your Services
Once you’ve got your medical support staff, supplies, and equipment, all that’s left to do is have your medical office set up for business. Then, let the community know you’re there. This should include both offline and online marketing tactics like creating a website, blog, or social media account as well as attending health fairs, handing out flyers, and even going door to door.
Starting your own private practice can be very rewarding. It gives you the opportunity to practice medicine the way you want (as long as you comply with the law). If you’re ready to start serving your community you’ll need to follow the above-mentioned steps. Then simply provide quality care and services that encourage patients to come back time and time again.
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