You’ve likely thought about opening your own practice if you are a doctor who works for another establishment or physician. Owning your own practice has the greatest advantage: you have more freedom and flexibility. This is a huge step, and you need to make sure it is something that you want to do. Here are seven steps you can take to open your own medical practice if this is what it is.
#1: Choose the Type of Practice you’d like to open
Hospital-owned clinics make up nearly 20% of all urgent care clinics. If you want to open your own practice, however, you will likely need more freedom than what hospital-owned clinics can offer. You might consider opening a solo practice or a group practice. While both are private practices, a solo or group practice will give you more autonomy (with greater expenses and responsibilities) while a group practice will allow you to share all the work with other physicians.
#2: Create a Business Plan
After you have decided on the type of practice you want to open, it is time to create a business plan. To get financing, all business owners need to create a business plan. This will outline how they intend to run their business. A business plan is not necessary for starting a medical practice. Instead, your primary focus should be on the financial aspects (startup cost, expected revenue, etc.). Because the goal of every business plan is to get financing, the medical industry is not as competitive as other industries. This is why the competitive analysis and marketing aren’t so important.
#3: Select a Location
While you wait to hear from investors, it’s a good idea to start looking for commercial buildings for your practice. Although there isn’t much competition in medicine, it’s important to locate your new office in an area with no private practice. You will have the best success if you look in areas with few medical practices. This could indicate a need for additional doctors.
It is also important to decide whether you are looking to rent or buy a older building. You might need to fix up an older building, so make sure you include this in your business plan.
#4: Equip your Practice
After your building is approved, you can make it look like an actual medical clinic. You will need the basics of medical equipment, tools and machinery. But don’t forget about practical items such as:
For your waiting area, you will need chairs and tables
For your staff, desks and chairs
Medical software is also required, such as practice management systems, electronic health records, medical transcription software and office management software.
#5 – Staffing Your Practice
Next, you will need medical and office staff to outfit your practice. Other physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners (NPs), and nurses are all needed. Also, you will need receptionists and medical billingers. To increase your chances of finding qualified applicants, you can post your job openings on a job site that lists NP and PA positions. Also, you should search for receptionists, office managers and other supplemental staff who have worked in a medical environment.
#6 – Take Care of All Legal Aspects
There are some legal requirements that must be met before any business can open its doors. First, register your practice as an entity. Second, obtain a tax ID. You must also be credentialed as a physician. It is important to remember to buy all the required types of insurance such as:
Insurance for commercial property
General liability insurance
Insurance for medical malpractice
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
#7 – Market Your Practice
Market your practice before you open it. Traditional marketing methods such as newspaper ads and flyers can be used, but this should not be the only method of marketing. Digital marketing is also a viable option. Social media is a powerful tool for digital marketing. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are some of the best ways to market a company.
Each physician’s experience with opening a private practice will be different. However, these are the essential steps. There are differences depending on what type of practice you open, and whether you have a partnership with another physician.