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Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
August, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 08
Exploring New Paths: Starting Your Own Business
By Perry Isenberg
So, you want to start your own business and be your own boss? There are quite a few considerations to keep in mind as you branch out on your own. Location; expenses/overhead; insurance; payroll; taxes; business licenses; depreciation on equipment; cost of supplies; etc., all influence how much money you need to start.The major reason smaller businesses fail is an insufficient amount of money (start-up capital). You need a budget, which should include your salary. An accountant can help you handle things smoothly.
Where you set up your new practice depends, among other things, on how much money you have to rent a decent office. Maybe you want a small office in your home, or just want to see clients in their homes (sort of a mobile therapist). You need to research how close your existing clients will be to the office, and if there are any high-traffic areas that may complicate their visits. No one wants to drive 20 miles to the therapist's office; decide how far you think your clients are willing to travel, since they are going to be the staple of your business in the beginning. Also check the zoning laws, and don't forget the business licenses and insurance! Find out how much insurance you need to carry; this varies depending on the state in which you are starting your business. You will need a fair amount of equipment, including massage tables; linens and towels; a washer and dryer; phones and phone lines; computers; desks and chairs; etc. Depending on how big you want to be, you may also need waiting-room furniture and decorations, office supplies, a copier, fax machine... the list goes on and on. Shop around for these items, so you get the best deals and spend the least money (without sacrificing quality). The plan is to research, budget, implement and market.
OK, so you've determined your approximate office costs... are you going to have any staff? With employees come payroll, federal and state tax, unemployment tax and workers' compensation obligations. Are you going to offer any benefits for long-term employees? Think about it first! If you have a few bad months financially, you'll still have to pay these benefits! Good therapists are hard to find, and you get what you pay for. You also need to be careful about the people you hire. You should do a background screening, and definitely check references. If you accept insurance from clients, you will need to have staff that knows insurance coding, medical billing, etc. Paperwork takes up too much time. It is worth hiring someone with this expertise (maybe part-time at first) to help free up your time to see more clients. Also, are you going to sell any products? Retail sales are vital for the financial health of the practice, and to expand client services. This may generate extra income for you... but don't forget the bookkeeping!
How do you get the money to start your practice? Some of the start-up money may be yours, a family member may help, or perhaps a friend has a little extra cash... of start-ups take the Small Business Administration (SBA) loan route. If you choose this option, you will need a good business plan in writing (a three-year projection is usually required) to be considered for one of these loans. The Small Business Administration has a fabulous website that can answer many of your questions, including how to apply, who to contact, what the business plan entails, and why you need one. You can visit the SBA website at www.sba.gov. There are numerous small business seminars you can attend (some at local community colleges). Usually a seminar is only two days long, and it's worth the time invested. A good seminar will provide such information as where you can apply for loans, and how to design your business and marketing plan.
Having your own practice has its upside and downside, but if you plan, research and prepare yourself to work hard for yourself, you will be successful.
Until next time, be healthy, be good, and stay focused and motivated.
Click here for previous articles by Perry Isenberg.
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