Whether you’ve recently hung up your shingle or you’ve been in the chiropractic business for 30 years, you can always get better—both at what you do and with what you offer to your patients.
According to Robert Koser, DC, a Chiropractic Physician and Clinical Business Development Professional at iRISE Spine and Joint in Tampa, Florida, “The single best piece of advice I could give is to invest in your niche interests that help others.”
Koser explains that while some DCs are passionate about rehab-based care such as the McKenzie Method, other DCs may prefer pursuing something like a manual therapy such as Active Release Technique. “There are so many different avenues a chiropractor can explore in terms of certifications and courses that can truly shape and create their dream career,” says Koser, a clinical consultant to chiropractors as well as legal professionals.
Before making any changes, like adding or adjusting features, Koser says that DCs should have a change management plan. “It is important to know why a change is happening and what is the desired goal,” say Koser. If you need help, reach out to a mentor or a reputable consultant. When you’ve implemented your change(s), Koser says to consistently review them to make sure that they’re meeting your expectations.”
When chiropractors decide to take steps to enhance their career development, one way would be through modalities. “Choosing the right modalities for a chiropractor to add to their practice really is dependent on their patient population and conditions treated. For example, if you are treating lots of marathon runners, compression recovery systems might be great option to offer,” says Koser. “When it comes to researching a specific modality brand before buying, I’d recommend asking the prospective company to put you in touch with their existing customers/clients to see how those doctors like the product. I’ve found this to be really effective approach. I also research PubMed for studies that mention that type of therapy so I can have as much evidence as possible before making a new modality investment.”
In some cases, incorporating new modalities could broaden a DCs demographic scope. For instance, Koser is acupuncture certified, and at times, he’s received referrals from primary care doctors to work with the geriatric community in the co-management of their pain.
Many chiropractors also deal with supplements for patients—either by prescribing them and/or selling them as well. Koser says that if you decide you want to add supplement sales, make sure that you have the space to both display and store inventory. If you’re working from a really small office, you may not want to add this if it’s going to make everything cramped.
He also suggests that DCs do their research. “Choosing a reputable company to work with is very important to ensure your patients are receiving the highest quality products possible. I recommend sourcing from Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) certified companies so you can rest assured the supplement has the accurate strength, composition, and purity that is listed on the label,” says Koser.
If you’re looking to add passive income to your practice, Koser recommends offering membership or subscription-base services. “Many doctors do this by offering massage therapy packages, personalized health coaching, and even personal training,” Koser says. “Implementing an ethical and value-based program can be an instant game changer for your patients and practice.”
Koser says that when developing your career, it’s important to keep a look out for red flags. “When expanding services, red flags should be going off if any opportunity is outside the scope of practice for your perspective state or violates the standard of care. Yellow flag offerings would be anything you are not entirely comfortable doing at that moment in time. An example of this would be if you want to start giving lectures, but resent public speaking–this gives you the opportunity to start practicing with a group such as Toastmasters International to master this new skill,” he says.
“Whenever a chiropractor ‘ups their game’ so to speak, with services and knowledge, the benefits are two-fold–you help the community, and you rise up in the profession,” says Koser. “I’m a firm advocate that patients are your best referral source. If you treat individuals with compassion, respect, and utmost leading expertise, you’ll certainly see positive effects on your practice.”