resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
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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