Whether you’re a doctor looking to start your own practice or a healthcare administrator seeking to establish a home healthcare regimen, you need to understand that starting your own business won’t be easy. There are several factors that go into the process, including building up a clientele. Before jumping into the business, here are six things you’ll want to do.
1. Have Your Finances Ready
Recognize that starting business will require a significant financial investment. You’ll need funds to register your business, purchase office space, market your brand, build clientele, buy equipment, travel, and more. Whether this comes from personal savings or from a group of investors, make sure you have adequate cash flow.
Furthermore, set up checking and credit accounts for your business. You’ll want to take out loans and do the spending under the name of your business in order to keep them separate for taxes. This protects you because if there’s a problem with your credit, it will be tied to your business rather than your personal name.
2. Set Up a Business Entity
You’ll choose from a list of options including sole proprietor, limited liability company (LLC), C corporation, and partnership. Set up the entity that fits your needs and works well within your business structure. If you’re confused about making the right choice, consult with your legal counsel.
After you’ve set up the entity and decided on your business name, you’ll also need to register with the government. Most importantly, obtain a Federal Employer Identification Number from the IRS and register your business with your Secretary of State.
3. Understand Insurance and Payment Policies
One of the more confusing aspects of starting your healthcare business is understanding insurance and writing your own payment policies. You’ll want to consider several things, including knowing how to bill insurance, accepting late payments and the fee for doing so, and payment plans.
You’ll especially want to understand Medicare and other government insurance plans. You’ll be dealing with this a lot, and there may be several confusing factors. For example, there’s the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), which is a new regulation for adjusting Medicare payments.
There are dozens of nuances and important rules to understand within government healthcare programs. You would benefit from hiring a consultant to handle this part of the business. You don’t want to mess anything up here since the results are heavy fines and possibly business failure.
4. Hire the Best
It’s difficult to find quality healthcare providers when you’re just starting out. Most medical professionals seeking jobs tend to gravitate towards larger institutions with better benefits and job security. But that doesn’t mean you should hire just anyone.
Carefully weed through the applicants to find the best in the pool. Look for signs of caregivers with adequate experience, competence, and compassion. Dependability is also a must since a caregiver failing to show up could result in a life or death situation.
A great place to look for quality caregivers when you’re just starting out is local community colleges and institutions. There will be high-quality workers in this pool who are looking to gain experience, and your company will be a great place for them to start.
5. Insure Yourself
Take care of the legal side of things with adequate insurance and an attorney on retainer. You’ll want liability insurance at the very least to mitigate risk and protect your business in general. You never know when a disgruntled customer will try to file a lawsuit. Accidents happen in the healthcare sector, and without proper legal help and insurance, you could lose your entire business.
6. Go Digital
The web is the best place to network and spread the word about your business. Start by building a professional website with content that’s both promotional and informational to boost SEO and generate credibility.
Post your URL on agency listing sites and established elderly care sites to help give your brand more exposure. You’ll also want social media profiles so that you can network and find clients. This is a low-cost form of marketing that can generate plenty of leads.
As you go through the process of opening your home healthcare facility, remember that attitude is everything. Your clientele will appreciate an upbeat demeanor that’s highly accommodating, and you’ll need the good vibes to get you through the hard times.
As you push through the difficulties and enjoy your accomplishments along the way, you’ll see your business begin to flourish.