MedCity Influencers

Medical practice owners: 6 Web sites worth visiting

While the list of online resources relevant to the private practice owner is virtually too large to be defined, the resources provided in this article will provide practice owners and managers with more useful information and tools than can digested in a single sitting. These resources are meant to be browsed, bookmarked, and referred to periodically, and they should certainly be consulted for the sake of your practice when it’s necessary to simply “look it up.”

The following article was authored by Vantage Clinical Solutions principal, Tannus Quatre, PT, MBA, and published in the August 2010 issue of Impact.

###

Look It Up: Online Resources for Practice Owners and Administrators
By Tannus Quatre PT, MBA

I remember numerous assignments during elementary school in which I would happen across a word I didn’t understand, or an unknown fact that I needed to know. My first inclination was always to ask a parent or teacher for help, both for whom help rarely consisted of actually giving me the information I was looking for. “Look it up,” they would invariably say, prompting a frustrating – albeit important – introduction into the world of self-sufficiency through the use of available resources.

Years later as a working professional I can appreciate these early lessons, as the ability to efficiently access and use available resources in my business has vastly improved the quality of my work by leveraging the experience and resource provided by others.

In this article, I will be sharing with you a few of my favorite online resources that are no further away than your fingertips, and which include tools and guidance of specific merit to the private practice owner. I hope you enjoy the following resources, and hope they make your life a little bit easier when you decide to “look it up” yourself.

General Business Resources

SBA.gov

The U.S. Small Business Administration website is a great resource for new business owners and veterans alike. The website (www.sba.gov) includes sections dedicated to planning and strategy, regulatory compliance, marketing, financing, and includes a directory of offices and resources available to assist business owners at the local level. One of the most helpful areas within the SBA website is the Small Business Planner which provides a step-by-step resource for managing your business at any stage in its lifecycle.

Business.gov

As an official site of the U.S. Small Business Administration, Business.gov (www.business.gov) is a close relative of the SBA website. And while content overlap does exist between the two online resources, Business.gov arguably provides users with a more streamlined experience when searching out answers to specific business questions, such as how to register a business, where to turn for tax advice, and where to look for information on loans and grants.

SCORE.org

SCORE is a nonprofit association consisting of over 12,000 volunteer counselors including retired entrepreneurs, executives, and corporate leaders. The organization is a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Association and provides free and confidential business advice to entrepreneurs and business owners either online or in-person. The SCORE website (www.score.org) boasts a sophisticated search engine which allows visitors to find volunteers who are willing and able to help problem-solve business questions of virtually any specialty or locale. The SCORE website also includes a host of “how-to” articles and downloadable tools which provide assistance with everything from how to inspire your staff to the projection of 12-month cash flows.

Professional Resources

PPSAPTA.org

The Private Practice Section website (www.ppsapta.org) is a helpful resource specific to physical therapist practice owners and administrators. The PPS website is newly designed and hosts a member center (requires membership and login) which provides members-only access to informational resources in the areas of practice management, reimbursement, and government affairs, as well as a limited selection of free tools and resources for non-members. Included in the members-only area are several links to PT-specific resources available online such as Medicare policy updates and recruitment guidelines from the U.S. Department of Labor.

APTA.org

The American Physical Therapy Association website (www.apta.org) has improved significantly in the past several years, becoming a comprehensive resource for PT’s of all disciplines as well as the patients we serve. The APTA website is strong in the areas of practice, advocacy, and reimbursement, providing a number of downloads which provide information useful to the private practice owner. Many of the most useful areas – such as the section on practice ownership which contains downloads relating to the choice of ownership structure for a PT practice and FAQ’s for managing/starting a practice – are exclusive to members, so if you want to get the goods, you have to be a member. Another example of a useful members-only section of the APTA website is Brandbeat, home of the Move Forward™ campaign (www.apta.org/brandbeat). Brandbeat contains a number of downloadable resources including marketing toolkits, training webinars, and downloadable logos and web buttons that can be used to promote the profession through your practice’s marketing materials or website.

MGMA.com

The Medical Group Management Association is the premier resource for medical group managers throughout the U.S. Their membership includes some of the most skilled and qualified practice managers in the country, and their website (www.mgma.com) is one of the most valuable hubs for information related to practice management in the healthcare industry. As you might imagine, much of the information available on the MGMA website is reserved for members and/or requires purchase, but there are a number of high-quality articles and resources for which a mouse click is the only currency required. Visit MGMA for free information and links related to healthcare reform, Stark law, billing and collections, and electronic medical records. This online resource is a must for anyone serious about excellence in practice management.

While the list of online resources relevant to the private practice owner is virtually too large to be defined, the resources provided in this article will provide practice owners and managers with more useful information and tools than can digested in a single sitting. These resources are meant to be browsed, bookmarked, and referred to periodically, and they should certainly be consulted for the sake of your practice when it’s necessary to simply “look it up.”

Tannus Quatre writes on Healthcare Entrepreneur, a blog by Vantage Clinical Solutions, a health-care management consulting firm based in Oregon and Colorado.

This post appears through the MedCity Influencers program. Anyone can publish their perspective on business and innovation in healthcare on MedCity News through MedCity Influencers. Click here to find out how.

Topics