Whether you are fresh out of medical school and eager to start your own practice or a tried and true veteran that tires of working for others, an independent practice of your own can be an exciting time in your life. Our medical industry has been slowly moving towards medical specialty services, enabling a physician to choose between general or the service that they love. Pay for performance has been escalating in recent years and with the advent of COVID-19 it has also catapulted some of the newer technologies such as telehealth. Both of these are key success factors for anyone looking to set up an independent practice.
Physicians that have established independent practices have found that they have the ability to evolve more quickly with societal changes. It takes huge medical institutions months, if not years to make any kind of change and whereas an independent practice can make an alteration within days or weeks. This ability can attract more patients who want healthcare designed for their specific needs.
Most hospitals and large healthcare organizations are known for their limited time with the patient. While they have a place as traditional doctor/patient environments, they continue to lack in the kind of personal relationship that an independent practice offers. This improved one-on-one contact improves patient responsiveness and has led to better patient adherence to treatment and medication. The higher level of trust also engages the patient for require follow up visits. Considering that there are now federal guidelines on patient compliance, the improved relationship that encourages patients to be more accountable for their healthcare means better overall health.
Once physicians get past the initial challenges of setting up a private practice and have good patient traffic, many report that they have a lot more free time than they have experienced in years. When you examine the sheer volume of time that was devoted to gaining their medical degree and then larger and more demanding institutions, having freedom to do what they want becomes invaluable. Independent practices also help to prevent professional burnout, which is very common in the larger institutions. An independent practice that is experiencing success will offer the option of hiring professional staff to be responsible for some of the day-to-day activities and business requirements. This leaves extra time for the physician to enjoy family and life.
Today’s independent practice shares many of the same technology requirements as bigger medical facilities, but instead of having a department that handles the billing, adjudication, and insurance payments, the private practice is responsible for it all. The latest technologies bring about an incredible opportunity to be more tech-savvy and in compliance with the laws and guidelines. In addition to compliance with HIPAA guidelines, an independent practice also demands safety involving medical waste management to ensure the protection of patients, staff, and the environment.
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