Many physicians start out in hospitals and group practices as a way to get established in the industry. This is how they get experience and develop a reputation in the community. There are, however, some drawbacks to putting their reputations in the hands of hospital administration or a physician board of directors.
Physician employed through hospitals and large group practices rely on the board to approve and supply what is necessary to provide the best patient care. Unfortunately, some hospital and clinic systems are broken. The inadequacies in communication and lack of upper management knowledge will translate to poor patient care and ultimately reflect on the physician’s reputation.
While working diligently on developing a great reputation, many physicians employed by hospitals or groups are faced with issues that they have no control over. Poor billing process, inadequate software applications, fragmented work flows, and other system-wide issues become very frustrating to a physician trying to grow professionally within a community. That is why many physicians are pulling up their entrepreneurial boot straps and going out on their own.
Dr. Rushika Fernandopulle, a physician and Harvard graduate, explained toForbes.com, ““As a practicing physician it soon became obvious our current model of care delivery does not work; instead of simply complaining about it I felt I needed to try to fix it, but got frustrated trying to do it within existing health systems, and found studying the problem (in academics), working through the government, and consulting was not effective. I decided that the best way to make change happen quickly was to simply strike out myself and just do it- being an entrepreneur allows you to break what others think are the rules (they aren’t) and take change into your own hands.”
Dr. Fernandopulle joins thousands of entrepreneurial physicians, across the country, taking matters into their own hands and starting up their own practice. It is an exciting time for young physicians, but many of them bite off more than they can chew. There is a huge learning curve for the physicians trying to be business owners as well as practitioners.
Most physicians will have an active involvement in the development of their new business, but will need assistance getting it all complete. It can be very overwhelming to open a business and the legal aspects of opening a medical office can be daunting. Help is out there in the form of consultants and they can find you even more help in the form of outsourced billing, business plan writing, and everything you can think of.
It is tricky, but not impossible, for the physicians to orchestrate all of the elements needed to start up a new medical practice. Depending on the funds available, the best decision may be hiring a consultant and outsourcing all business services, until the office is stable enough to hire internally.
If you are a physician considering opening your own practice, do your research and make a plan. Your business success depends on how well you plan and the help you hire. Paying a consultant $5,000 may be the best investment you make in your new practice.
Try and get a referral from someone you know. If you cannot get a consultant referral, do an internet search of consultants in your area and speak to their former clients. Your best information will come from those clients who used that consultant. Remember to enjoy yourself while building your new practice and developing the reputation you deserve.