There’s more than medical expertise needed for setting up a medical practice from the ground up, especially if you want to hit the ground running. Whether you buy an existing practice or purchase a new one, these are our top 8 steps to ensuring that it is a success from the start.
1. Build a profitable business plan
When setting up a medical practice, the first thing that you need is a solid business plan. By taking the time to build a strong and considered plan for the short, medium, and long term, you can ensure that you know exactly what the vision is for your practice, and how to reach it.
2. Create a financial strategy
Will you be purchasing an existing practice or setting up a medical practice from scratch? How will you finance your practice? What is your tax plan? With a profitable business plan in place, the next step is to prospect potential investors and banks for financing. A medical practice can cost anywhere from $30,000 to $500,000 depending on location, so you will need to secure enough capital to cover the initial cost of premises, technology, equipment and staff onboarding with your loan.
3. Invest in insurance
Another essential step when setting up a medical practice is investing in medical indemnity insurance. While compliance policies and established procedures around patient care and regular staff training will minimise risk, insurance provides the necessary protection.
4. Decide on what accounting systems, processes, and procedures you will use
While thinking about insurance, this is the ideal time to establish clear policies and procedures for day-to-day operations (e.g. appropriate staff behaviour, safe handling of patient information, fee management, equipment maintenance etc). Not only will this ensure that your practice is equipped to fulfil its duty of care, but it reduces the risk of liability and helps you to invest in the right insurance too.
5. Take time to select the perfect location
When setting up a medical practice, location is a prime factor for determining its success. Whether you’re purchasing an existing practice or starting a new one, you need to make sure that the location satisfies 3 must haves: accessibility, high foot traffic, and the opportunity to maximise your referral network.
6. Source strong and reliable support staff
Not having a practice manager can cost a business tens of thousands of dollars a year in lost income, so spend some time finding the right practice manager for your practice; they are incredibly invaluable, especially in the first years, as they help you to balance day-to-day operations with strategic business priorities.
Next, build a support team. When hiring, make sure that your staff members share your core values, understand the vision of your practice, and are passionate about the work and helping you to grow your practice.
Once you have hired the staff for your practice, you will need to think about your business structure.
7. Invest in the right technology to power your team
How can technology help your business? When setting up a medical practice, it is essential that you consider technology as it can be the difference between breaking even and success. Focus on technology that can empower your practice and your staff to be more efficient and effective, such as patient engagement technology (portals, apps, automated check-in tools) and integrations that can streamline your practice operations (voice to text technology, payment gateways, easy claim for patient rebates).
8. Focus on building your digital presence
Once you’ve gone through each of these steps and you’ve got all your accreditations and legal requirements to open your practice, your focus should then shift to providing the best patient care possible and finding ways to market your practice so that you can acquire and treat new patients. One of the best ways to do this in this digital age is to build your digital presence; improving the user experience of your website, publishing regular content that is optimised for search engines such as Google, and developing a social media strategy, all make up a solid marketing strategy.
Need help with opening your own practice? We can help you with your business planning, including creating a cash flow and profit strategy to ensure that whatever decision you make is a success. Just contact me via email@example.com and I’d be keen to help.
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