What equipment will you need to get yourself up and running for a chiropractic solo practice?
Whether you are a fresh chiropractic college graduate or have already spent a number of years in a group practice, making the decision to fly solo can be both exciting and scary at the same time. There are so many factors to consider for a chiropractic solo practice – picking a location; leasing office space; thinking about branding, scope of practice, and your menu of services – that it may all seem overwhelming at first.
One of your biggest considerations will be the equipment you need to get yourself up and running. Let’s discuss what equipment will help your chiropractic solo practice flourish, but not break your budget.
The treatment room is where you will want to focus your attention the most, in terms of the equipment you need. Obviously, you will need to start with some sort of treatment table. A basic flat table is a good place to start, particularly for patient exams and simple adjustments.
However, you may want to consider at least one other type of table with additional features as your practice grows, so that you can treat a wider range of health issues. A drop table, with sections that can move during adjustments, is a wise choice for your next type of table. It is extremely versatile, and provides you with more adjustment options than just a standard flat table.
If you are focusing on a specific patient demographic, such as pediatric or geriatric, a table that can be elevated or lowered is a great investment, as it will make it easier for your patients to get on and off the table. Additional equipment that you may want to have available in your treatment rooms include an adjusting tool, a TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) machine, and low-level or cold laser therapy tools.
In the new world of wellness and a patient’s need for increased immunity, offering nutritional supplements has become a must for many chiropractic offices.
Eating right and supplementing diets that are lacking in certain vitamins and nutrients can have a large impact on overall health that can aid or subtract from the effectiveness of chiropractic adjustments.
Vitamin and nutrition sales have skyrocketed in the era of COVID, and if patients do not by from you, they will be buying elsewhere.
Your X-ray equipment is probably second only to your treatment table in terms of importance. It is certainly your most important diagnostic tool, particularly for new patients.
The images you get from your X-ray machine will help you explain your proposed treatment plan to your new patients, as part of your report of findings. In addition, X-ray images taken over time can also show how treatment is progressing.
When considering your X-ray equipment, keep in mind that everything will need to be set up in its own room, for safety reasons. Although digital x-ray machines offer better quality images, as well as ease of electronic transfer, they are more expensive than traditional machines. A digital machine will also require a dedicated computer terminal to process the images.
Massage therapy room
If you decide to bring in a massage therapist to expand your service menu, you will need to consider equipment for their room. Although they may bring some of their own supplies, such as linens, you will likely be responsible for providing the treatment furniture, such as a massage table or chair, pillows and specialized bolsters, as well as washer and dryer to properly clean dirty linens.
A basic massage table, fitted out with a face cradle, is relatively inexpensive. Over time, you may consider some of the more specialized tables, such as those for treating pregnant women. In terms of a washer and dryer, look for one that is high capacity. If your budget will allow, opt for an extended warranty, as your washer and dryer is likely to get daily use.
Chiropractic solo practice: add as you go
Getting the right combination of equipment will define your chiropractic solo practice, as well as help you succeed. Over time, as you build your solo practice, you can then add on specialized equipment to better serve your expanding patient base.