When you’re just starting out in private practice, you may wonder if you’ll ever get big enough to need a budget. Trust me—it’s never to early to set up good budgeting practices. Here are some tips that will help you get your money organized so you stay on top of the health of your business.
Because the sources for CERPs are so diverse, and you may be accumulating them piecemeal, it’s important to have a solid system in place to keep them organized.
What’s something you wish you were told when starting private practice?
Every IBCLC is going to incorporate some tech into their private practice infrastructure. Unless you are only using a landline, paper forms, and a physically locked cabinet, you are naturally going to be implementing some digital and/or cloud-based systems. Email is paperless, and so is an internet phone line.
It is possible to have a completely paperless workflow in your private practice. That means that from the moment you make first contact with a client through sending them their care plans, no physical paper is ever used or generated.
When I wrote my books and created my legal forms, I made sure to hire an attorney to carefully go over everything I was saying. I wanted to provide the most accurate, up-to-date, and ethical information possible. My lawyer Linda Strauss has been absolutely amazing–not only does she know the law, she also knows the birth world and was recommended to me by another IBCLC.
From being a part of the IBCLC community for so many years now, I’ve seen certain concerns arise time and time again.
When Leah Jolly and I launched the Lactation Business Coaching podcast, honestly all we really wanted to do was chat about the ins and outs of being private practice lactation consultants. Honestly, if we had had any sense of the steep learning curve of podcasting, we may never have actually taken the plunge. Now that we’re in our 20s (episode-wise, that is), we’re in a good groove with productivity and tech. I though it would be helpful to share how we do things in the hopes that other lactation consultants will start their own podcasts, for parents or professionals or both.
Managing client privacy and confidentiality is relatively straightforward when you’re a solo practitioner. You only have yourself to worry about. But once you start working with other people in your private practice, you’re going to need to institute policies and procedures to make sure that everyone connected with your practice is maintaining the same high standards that you have for yourself. Here are some basic steps you can take to insure privacy compliance.
Since paperless is the name of my game, I want to make sure that you know about MilkNotes, developed by RN IBCLC Liz Flight to be a cloud-based charting system designed specifically for lactation work.
When it comes to online scheduling, Acuity is my favorite of the HIPAA-compliant platforms out there, making it easy-peasy for someone to land on my website, learn about my services, and book an appointment all without any texting back-and-forth about time. But Acuity can do so much more for you—and even increase client self-efficacy.
You may not think it’s in your scope of practice to engage with insurance billing and coding—but if there are babies who are not getting human milk because insurance companies are shirking their responsibilities, then you may want to expand your understanding of your ethical duty to your clients.