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Balancing Spring Challenges
As the winter months come to a close and warmer spring weather appears, patients may begin to present with new challenging pattern presentations.
Eczema & Acupuncture: A Sound Solution (Part 1)
Eczema affects approximately 3.5 percent of the global population and is one of the most common skin complaints seen by dermatologists.
The Visual Error Scoring System: A Concussion Tool
Postural stability and oculomotor function are the most easily recognized physical indicators of neurologic motor dysfunction associated with concussions.
Why I Quit Doing House Calls
My father was a chiropractor who did house calls, so when I became a DC, I figured doing house calls was part of the job. My March article recalled my experience as a small boy, accompanying my dad while he went to patients' homes to treat them.
Clearing Blocks: A Way to Improve Cosmetic Acupuncture
As a Five Element acupuncturist who teaches facial acupuncture classes nationally, I was surprised to learn that one of the basic principles I was taught in school is unfamiliar to most acupuncturists.
Raditation & Your Smartphone: Is it Worth the Risk?
If radial arteries could talk (and in my experience they can to some extent), they would say, "Step away from the smartphone." At least that is the message I am receiving loud and clear as I feel the pulses of many patients.
An Unexpected Diagnosis: The Result of Lacking Communication
A couple years ago I had a case that showed me the importance of open communication between health practitioners. We need to show up with less fear, and let go of our judgments so we can do better for the patient.
A Daily Strategy for Heavy-Metal Detox
In modern society, we are constantly exposed to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. These heavy metals have no essential biochemical roles in our body, and conversely, can cause us a great deal of harm if they build up to toxic levels.
Taking the Chiropractic Message to the Press
"There is no better place on earth to have a news event," the National Press Club boasts, and it's easy to understand why: Every year, the 108-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization hosts countless press conferences on the hottest topics impacting America and often the world.
Women's Hormones: A Western & Eastern Perspective
Sometimes it may seem that you require a degree in medicine to understand hormones and how they function.
News in Brief
ACA Adopts New Governance Model; ACA 2017 Awards; CCA Helps Calif. DCs "Share the Love"; $1 Million to Help Advance the Profession; D'Youville Raises the Bar on Anatomy Education; ErRatum.
Give Yourself the Digital Advantage
When you see this article in the print version of this issue and swear you read it already, don't be alarmed: you probably did. That's because by that time, the May issue will have been available online in digital format for three weeks.
Universal Design: Principles & Practice
In many respects, universal design serves as the core of ergonomics. It's also a good tool to use when designing a return-to-work program for injured and/or ill patients. Let's take a closer look at universal design and why it should matter to you and your patients.
Is the New Medicare Reporting Exemption Right for You?
What you've heard is not a rumor – there will be exemptions for providers of Medicare patients, with no penalties assessed for offices that do not do Quality Payment Program (EHR, PQRS, MACRA and MIPS) reporting.
Creating Good Business Buzz
What do patients really think about working with you? Rarely do you hear the whole truth. Those who improve may be candid in their gratitude.
Is It Time to Rethink Mental Illness? (Pt. 1)
Invariably, patients will ask their chiropractor about depression or various mental illnesses. Some practitioners will reflexively offer a cervical adjustment, suggest St. John's wort or contemplate a referral to a specialist.
Bill With Confidence: Learn What to Collect
Q: I am trying to understand what I may collect from my patient when there is insurance. Do I have to accept the amount allowed by the plan or may I collect up to my billed amount? Please note, I am not a member of any insurance plan.
New Relationships, Old Trauma: AOM & Other Healing Strategies
Being in love is one the most beautiful and enjoyable experiences. Most of us are willing to pay almost any price to have that experience, and still often find it elusive or fleeting. Navigating the ups and downs of loving relationships are often challenging — even for the most psychologically balanced among us.
An Integrated Approach to Chronic Pain
Findings from a unique Medicaid pilot project in Rhode Island involving high-use Medicaid recipients from two health plans were recently presented to the state's Department of Health, demonstrating stellar outcomes with regard to medication use, ER visits, health care costs and patient satisfaction.
January, 2009, Vol. 09, Issue 01
Cutting Back Does Not Mean Cutting Corners
By Angie Patrick
With the new year upon us, now is the time to make some observations, commitments and resolutions about the way you do business. As our economic climate is changing globally, the effect to our practice or small business can be felt. Cutting back does not equate to cutting corners. Making changes in some of the current ways you promote yourself, promote your professionalism, and conduct your everyday business can net you additional assets rather than liabilities. Making sound choices appropriate for your business, your image, and your wallet can only assist you through these uncertain times, allow you a measure of consistency in the execution of a sound business plan and help provide greater financial stability.
Let's look at how you operate your business. Are you a mobile therapist? If so, do you keep an accurate record of your mileage? Have you kept your automobile maintenance receipts? Do you have a gas card that pays you a reward of some kind, be it airline points, discounts on future purchases, or free gas? Do you make all your business purchases with the same credit card, also allowing for reward points, cash back or some other benefit? If these are things you have not considered, you should. These things help you to manage the expenses and provide relevant and accurate information at tax time, often resulting in some deductions you may be missing!
Do you have a brick-and-mortar location? If so, have you considered renegotiating your lease with your landlord? With so many businesses sitting empty, the last thing your landlord will want to do is lose a good tenant. They may opt for a reduction in rent rather than be faced with possible vacancies. It certainly cannot hurt to broach the subject when your lease is up for renewal. This can potentially be a savings of hundreds of dollars a year, which can provide you with extra money you can funnel into other areas of your business that may need attention.
Do you buy your own supplies? If so, consider bulking your ordering to see if you can obtain any additional discounts. If you typically order monthly or bimonthly, consider ordering quarterly and buying in bulk. This often results in a decrease of your supply expense, and all it costs you is a bit of pre-planning and storage.
Do you do any advertising? If not, consider making the investment in your business, and get the word out to the public. You do not have to run out to the newspaper and take out a full-page ad; you can use smaller venues to build your business. Consider placing ads in church bulletins, and in community publications. Perhaps you utilize community sponsorship opportunities to get your name in the community. Little League teams, Girl Scout events, Fun Runs and charity events all reach your target market, and can help you establish yourself as a mainstay supporter of your community and a subject-matter expert.
Can your customers get in contact with you easily? If not, then you run the risk of having them make another phone call and go to a competitor. When people are ready to book an appointment, they do not want to wait for a return call in order to confirm. They want immediate gratification and the satisfaction of knowing their appointment has been made.
If you book your own clients, it is often difficult to timely manage the inbound calls when your services are booked the majority of the day. It may be advantageous to look into an online service to manage bookings for you. This would be a Web site service that enables your clients to book their appointments themselves online, and keep you from always being behind the eight ball in returning calls. One such service I have seen is www.bookingcalendar.com, and from what I can tell, it takes all the stress off of managing a client book.
Are you contacting your customers on a regular basis? If not, you may be missing opportunities for bookings for birthdays, anniversaries, client gifts, thank-you gifts and bridal parties. Taking a moment to touch base with your client base once a month by phone, e-mail, newsletter or postcard can help put your business at the top of their mind when it comes to gift-giving and celebrations. Not to mention that it can prompt them into a rebooking of your services for themselves!
Are you as organized as you should be? Do you keep receipts in the glove box, loosely in the desk drawer, or tossed in a shoebox? Are your customer contacts in a database or file for easy reference? Do you have updated client intake forms filled out for each client? Are you appropriately recording all transactions for tax purposes? Do you have billing up to date? Are your expenses managed appropriately? If not, consider working toward bringing these items in line with a concentrated effort to de-clutter, organize and manage these very real business needs. You are a professional, and a professional runs their business; they do not allow their business to run them.
Take a few minutes to consider these issues, and see if your business could benefit from making some changes. The chances are it will, and could help you achieve a better result for the time and energy you expend to make your business work. The goal here is not to be cheap, but rather to streamline and organize to maximize your growth potential in tighter economic times. By tweaking a few things, you will see the positive difference you can make, and it will encourage you to look into new ways to trim the excess, and make the existing processes more efficient. With greater efficiency comes greater profitability, and making more money doing what you enjoy is a very good byproduct indeed.
Click here for previous articles by Angie Patrick.
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