A: Yes, it is certainly possible to start a simple practice. If you are single and can live free somewhere it is easier. If you have a family, someone else needs to be providing income to keep the family going.Taking your living expenses out of the picture, here are some things you can do to start simply with no bank loan:
“¢ Ask another doctor if you can rent space in the office as an independent contractor.
“¢ Find an inexpensive location that needs fixing up and do the work yourself.
“¢ A credit card machine that can be taken with you if you travel to see patients or set up in your office.
“¢ All the forms for patient documentation and submitting claims to insurance companies and Medicare. You may decide to submit or you can have the patients do it, but the forms are needed for every patient, starting with the first one.
“¢ A filing system for patient records. Get a small filing cabinet with a lock to keep patient records private.
“¢ If you want to do electronic billing, you will need a computer and Internet connection..
“¢ If you need x-rays, find a local radiology group or clinic to take them. Develop a relationship with the radiologists; maybe they will refer or become patients themselves.
The key to a simple practice is remembering this: You can always grow; you can’t always cut back. Once you commit to big expenditures for leased space, equipment, practice advising, or software, you can’t easily get out of those commitments without losing money. Every month you must make those payments, even if you don’t have patients. That means having external money from banks or investors to keep you going. If you don’t have it, don’t spend it.