Having a one-person practice may be a precarious start, but it’s the growing mental health practice that comes with a number of issues that must be addressed. Every mental health professional knows the perils of procrastination, but all too often, small and growing practices fail to plan big by only handling the small things such as their mental health practice management software. Winging it, however successfully, is not a good long-term plan.
- Make a business plan. A practice is as much a business as any other, so you will need to have the solid grounding that a business plan will give you. You need to know what your objectives are and how to achieve them. It’s a road map for growth.
- Track expenses. Every expense from mileage to rent and furniture needs to be accounted for each year.
- Decide on corporate structure. Whether you are a solo practitioner using an LLC, or a practice with a number of partners forming an S Corporation or C Corporation, you need to consult with a financial professional about the best structure for your business needs.
- Pick out a practice software. You’ll need to keep EHR and EMR, track patient billing, and be able to record and chart progress. Ideally, you should evaluate multiple types of practice management software for their ease of use, and see how well it fulfills the needs of therapists and patients. Train everyone on how to use it, and set permission and access levels to protect patient privacy.
Getting on top of your growth and planning for it by not putting the cart before the horse. It’s all based on sound and reasonable planning. By filling in the details such as your choice of health practice management software, you are free to focus on the big picture.