If your household is anything like mine, late spring and early summer is prime time for getting the house in order. Windows are flung open, closets and drawers cleared of clutter, seasonal clothing swapped out, and everything else dusted, swept, vacuumed, and polished to a shine. It feels like utter chaos while it’s happening, but oh, the peace of mind that follows! I know that all the cobwebs, both real and metaphorical, have been swept out, and I am renewed…and a bit exhausted.
This is a great time to clean up your practice, too. Not just the office itself, though that’s a great goal in and of itself, but the procedures, policies, and functions of your business. What can you do this month to make your business shine?
Scheduling the Doctor
Certainly, you see your patients on a schedule, but do the rest of your responsibilities show up on your calendar? I’m often surprised by the number of DCs who don’t set aside a specific time each week to return phone calls, catch up on paperwork, go through mail or more importantly, for basic self-care like meditating or stretching. Are you on your own calendar as a priority?
Scheduling the Practice Team
Everyone on your team should have a schedule as well, from the billing and collections staff to the front desk CA. Without a schedule that accommodates all the daily, weekly, and monthly tasks, practices are in chaos with team members leaping to put out fire after fire instead of getting ahead so that fires don’t start in the first place.
Clutter turns up in places you might not expect: paperwork, certainly, but also in outdated procedures, stale patient scripting, and policies that no longer make sense but have become “the way we’ve always done things.” If something, whether it’s a physical object or an agreed-upon policy, is no longer working for you, it’s time to change it up or get rid of it altogether. Don’t be afraid to examine every system in your practice as objectively as possible for possible tweaking, reorganizing, or even elimination.
Get Rid of Time Drains
Office inefficiencies make things more complicated than they need to be, and they waste energy as well as time. If you amass a big enough pile of them, they start eroding team morale to boot. Consider more productive patterns such as offering “last chance” amnesty to patients with longstanding balances (instead of continuing to spend time and money chasing small change), streamlining intake procedures with online forms, scripting your ChiroHealthUSA conversations, and getting patient credit cards on file so you can simply bill their accounts at the end of each visit [Editorial Note: please follow all guidelines and laws regarding credit card information retention].
Dr. Ray Foxworth is a certified Medical Compliance Specialist and President of ChiroHealthUSA. A practicing Chiropractor, he remains “in the trenches” facing challenges with billing, coding, documentation, and compliance. He has served as president of the Mississippi Chiropractic Association, former Staff Chiropractor at the G.V. Sonny Montgomery VA Medical Center and is a Fellow of the International College of Chiropractic. You can contact Dr. Foxworth at 1-888-719-9990, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the ChiroHealthUSA website at www.chirohealthusa.com. Join us for a free webinar that will give you all the details about how a DMPO can help you practice with more peace of mind. Go to www.chirohealthusa.com to register today.