Q&A: Top 3 things to have when starting a private practice

policies q&a videos templates Oct 06, 2021

Question: What are the top three things that you need to know before starting your own private practice?

ANNA: Okay, so we're going to start off with a question today. This is one we get from our mentees all the time. People want to know, what are the top three things that you need to know before starting your own private practice? So, Ingrid, I'm going to toss it over to you. Do you want to go ahead and take this one?

INGRID: Sure. I would say the top three things you need to have are some paperwork, including your practice policies, a financial agreement, and really knowing what that's gonna look like, what is expected of the client and of your business to successfully run a business. So having all those documents and paperwork in place are really important and makes it so much easier down the line.
The second thing I would say is to have a secure system for your telehealth. Most of us are doing some sort of telehealth now, and it's a good idea to get set up with a HIPAA-compliant telehealth platform, even if you feel like, well, I'm not taking insurance, or I don't need to look so much at what HIPAA requires, it's a good idea to just go ahead and get started with a secure platform. Not only does it protect you as a business, it really shows that you're serious and that you are a healthcare provider to your clients. The last thing I would say, and I honestly recommend this of all registered dietitians is to have liability insurance. You want to be able to cover yourself as well as your business, and it's really not very expensive. But if you do decide to say, incorporate and have a business thing or have some LLC, you want to make sure that both you as an individual provider and the business are covered. Whoever provides your liability insurance should be able to help you set up both of those pieces.

ANNA: That's so great. I think sometimes I see people who think that, oh, if I'm not taking insurance, then I really just don't need to take care of all of those nitty-gritty details. Do you agree with that?

INGRID: No. The way a person pays doesn't affect the fact that you're running a business and you need to get paid. And so whether they're paying through their insurance or they're paying privately, you want to be clear on what your policies are and especially your financial policies, your no-show policy, all that good stuff. We have sample documents in our document library that are downloadable and editable and I think you'll find a lot of the things that we've walked through and, and changed and edited through the years are in those. And it just makes everyone feel much more comfortable from the beginning to recognize that you really truly are a business, and, you know, that shows respect for both sides.

ANNA: Definitely.

CHRISTIE: Also too, when we're talking about the platforms, what I think is pretty unique is that each of us represents a different platform that we use for our business. And so when you're comparing the difference between Simple Practice or Practice Better, I use IntakeQ, you know, we can be able to speak to you about the differences and how to use each of those platforms as well.
So there's not just one option, and for us to be able to help you to know what to shop for and look for.

ANNA: Yeah. They all have their pros and cons, for sure. So, it's interesting that we all three use different ones. I like that. I think it's good. Well, thanks ladies for answering our question.


Have you been running your practice with wishy washy new client paperwork? In order to protect your business and your own mental health, having concrete and clear paperwork is a necessity.

You can download several different versions of new client paperwork right from our membership site. Start using one in your practice today, or mix and match any of our policies to create a custom document.

Members can find copies of these policies in the document library.

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