Launching a new independent practice involves purchasing equipment, hiring staff, marketing to new patients, and developing a solid plan for financial sustainability. Financial success tips for new practices include realistic budgeting, reviewing plans and goals regularly, and taking advantage of technology for an efficient operation.
A realistic budget will help you project expenses and revenue for a set period of time. Your budget should reflect your ability to bring in enough new patients initially to cover the costs of salaries, furniture, and equipment. As your practice grows, the budget can be adjusted accordingly. Initially, however, plan on the minimum necessary to sustain the practice so you don’t overspend.
When hiring, take the time to fully train and educate your team on what your practice offers and the culture you want to instill for both patients and staff. Your front desk team, especially, is the foundation from which your practice will grow and build a steady revenue stream.
Choosing the right technology for your new practice will be an important step toward your financial success. An electronic health record (EHR) solution that is easy to implement and use can make the difference in maintaining accurate patient data, scheduling, billing, and receiving payment for your services. The EHR should be a seamless part of your daily operations as you and your clinical staff work to provide high quality care for your patients.
Elation offers options you need for your new practice, so you can provide phenomenal care for your patients. Learn more about the Elation EHR for new practices.
Billing and reimbursement can be a complicated challenge for a new independent practice. You can set up a system to verify new patients’ healthcare plans and what they will cover. It’s also important to re-verify existing patients on a regular basis as plans may change, particularly if the patient has switched employers or moved to the healthcare marketplace. Verifying eligibility and securing authorizations will result in fewer headaches later, if you find that you need to bill the patient directly.
As your practice grows, review your budget, your goals, and your financial decisions regularly. Make adjustments based on whether you are seeing an increase in revenue or want to expand your practice offerings going forward. A review every 6 to 12 months enables you to stay on top of your revenue, your expenses, and your opportunities for financial success.
Maintaining financial health for your independent practice over the long term involves some essential habits for you and your team to develop, including:
- Reviewing financial statements monthly to ensure accuracy and to get a real-time overview of your status. A balance sheet gives you a snapshot of your current cash position and your debt balances. Your monthly financial statement review enables you to see trends that may need to be addressed in the more immediate term as you measure your financial goals over the longer term.
- Assembling the right team for your independent practice to succeed. Remember that your team includes financial and legal advisors as well as your clinical staff. Your professional advisors are important to ensure that your practice remains financially healthy and grows in a managed and sustainable manner.
- Benchmarking salaries to ensure you are paying your clinical staff appropriately. Staff retention is important for the financial success of a new practice. Making sure your compensation package is competitive can help with attracting quality talent that will contribute toward the longevity of your practice.