Practice Development 101 – Planning

One of the perks of my job is that I have the opportunity to discuss the business of growing medical practices with many physicians.  I love the fact that there are so many individuals out there looking for creative ways to care for their patients while growing their businesses.  I talk about physician dispensing as a mechanism for growing a practice but it is obviously one part of a much bigger equation.

I recently helped a physician develop a business plan for a new clinic in a resurgent part of Indianapolis, Indiana.  Though a pulmonologist by training, this doctor has expanded his scope of practice by offering more general services to employees of a local specialty hospital and wanted to branch out.  During the planning process, I discovered a few nuggets that I wanted to share about how this successful doctor balances his approach to the business of medicine and the care of the patient.

  1. Put the patient at the center and build around him/her.  When looking at the area for the new practice, we pulled demographic information and developed a practice plan around serving this diverse population.
  2. Start small and look for places to grow. The new location will initially be staffed by a nurse practitioner under the physician’s oversight.  This enables them to “ramp” the clinic up with basic health services and gauge success as it grows.  Medication dispensing may or may not be the right place to start based on the population and service mix.

to be continued…

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