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Loans to Start a Private Practice (Immediately Following Training)

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  • Loans to Start a Private Practice (Immediately Following Training)

    I have decided to go the private practice route immediately following training (two years to go). I'm currently in the process of scoping out undersaturated areas of the country.

    I am in ophthalmology and a new practice requires a considerable financial outlay for equipment. My main question is about funding: does anyone have any advice for me as far as funding goes? What is the process for obtaining a loan to start a practice? What are the best funding sources? I understand that I will need to write a business plan: does anyone have a good example of one they could share with me?

    Any and all insight about acquiring a loan to start a practice immediately following training would be very much appreciated. I plan to decide on a location in the next six months, and I want to begin scoping out office space and processing all of the paperwork for the practice a year out (acquiring a medical license in the new state, registering with insurance companies) so that I can see my first patient only a short time after completing training.

    I would be incredibly grateful for any advice that you might have!

  • #2
    Originally posted by privatepracticejourney View Post
    I have decided to go the private practice route immediately following training (two years to go). I'm currently in the process of scoping out undersaturated areas of the country.

    I am in ophthalmology and a new practice requires a considerable financial outlay for equipment. My main question is about funding: does anyone have any advice for me as far as funding goes? What is the process for obtaining a loan to start a practice? What are the best funding sources? I understand that I will need to write a business plan: does anyone have a good example of one they could share with me?

    Any and all insight about acquiring a loan to start a practice immediately following training would be very much appreciated. I plan to decide on a location in the next six months, and I want to begin scoping out office space and processing all of the paperwork for the practice a year out (acquiring a medical license in the new state, registering with insurance companies) so that I can see my first patient only a short time after completing training.

    I would be incredibly grateful for any advice that you might have!
    I have no clue but I really wish someone would start a WCI style website/blog/forum that deals with such questions. I wish our professional societies cared as well.

    Good luck. Medicine needs more people like you willing to give it a go on their own.




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    • #3
      The problem is that the risk involved is substantial. Lenders evaluate risk based on a combination of income and assets pledged as security.
      Financing is going to be a huge problem. No income track record and "used assets" are obstacles. You may get a hospital that will help fund if you actually will feed business to them. Local bank is your best option.
      The reality is a fresh graduate is learning to run a practice, learning to run a business and trying a fresh start-up all at the same time. No easy solution.

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      • #4
        I would highly recommend against doing this. Work for a hospital or some other doctor widget factory first. Learn how to be a doctor, how to bill and how to run a practice, employees... Then start your own practice. This way when times get tough, you first gut reaction won't be to sell to private equity.

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        • #5
          Thank you all so much for your comments so far. I realize that the answer to the funding question might not be very simple.

          That said, any resources, templates, or input about writing a business plan for a medical practice would remain highly appreciated.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by privatepracticejourney View Post
            Thank you all so much for your comments so far. I realize that the answer to the funding question might not be very simple.

            That said, any resources, templates, or input about writing a business plan for a medical practice would remain highly appreciated.
            https://www.orba.com/elements-medica...business-plan/

            Not affiliation, courtesy of my Google MD certificate? I really wish you luck. Trying to do multiple things at once is extremely difficult. Just getting signed up for insurance coverage might be critical. Opps, crappy reimbursement alone would shut off the revenue streams even if you got the volumes of patient calls. Why would any insurance company put you in network if they already have plenty of coverage (could be one hospital system). Huge task all at one time. It takes working capital and startup costs out of pocket, not loans. Not meant to discourage you, more avoiding problems.
            Not a physician, but it is what it is.

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            • #7
              You're just training on the technical side of your field right now. When you finish training, you will not be fully trained on the business side.

              I'd think very carefully starting off by spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to start a practice you lack the business skills to run properly. Ophthalmology has some of the highest capital costs I've seen among the various specialties to start a practice from scratch which makes it all the more risky.

              Work for a private practice learning the business side before venturing out on your own.

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              • #8
                Hi,

                I would post your on SDN ophthalmology. Dr. Choi has a blog on opening solo right after training and frequents the site.

                his website is : https://solobuildingblogs.com

                he also has a google group of other Ophthalmologists went solo.

                definitely takes work, but seems more ophthalmologists are advocating for it.

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                • #9
                  I agree with the advise of taking a employee job before trying to open your own practice. New graduates have enough to learn with the nuances of billing and practicing medicine without having to worry about figuring out how to hire, make payroll, lease an office, equipment, etc. Too many unknown unknowns for my comfort level. 1-2 years to build a small start up fund is not unreasonable.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by privatepracticejourney View Post
                    I have decided to go the private practice route immediately following training (two years to go). I'm currently in the process of scoping out undersaturated areas of the country.

                    I am in ophthalmology and a new practice requires a considerable financial outlay for equipment. My main question is about funding: does anyone have any advice for me as far as funding goes? What is the process for obtaining a loan to start a practice? What are the best funding sources? I understand that I will need to write a business plan: does anyone have a good example of one they could share with me?

                    Any and all insight about acquiring a loan to start a practice immediately following training would be very much appreciated. I plan to decide on a location in the next six months, and I want to begin scoping out office space and processing all of the paperwork for the practice a year out (acquiring a medical license in the new state, registering with insurance companies) so that I can see my first patient only a short time after completing training.

                    I would be incredibly grateful for any advice that you might have!


                    contact live oaks bank. https://www.liveoakbank.com/ they do a lot of sba loans for healthcare practices. if nothing else, they should have a department that can give you some advice to guide you on the process.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Search in advanced search on the forum: “practice start” in titles only.
                      https://forum.whitecoatinvestor.com/...-solo-practice

                      The best mentoring is people that have been through it. There is a blog article as well. Sooo many things in common in a practice besides specialty. Website, accounting, leases, used equipment, computer setup, insurance, office staff, payroll etc.

                      I strongly suggest cast a wider net. There is tuition to be paid for startup costs. DIY mistakes are costly. Just the location selection and lease is hard to do. Demographics, marketing, competition and any referrals takes time and expertise.

                      First mistake: Looking for an ophthalmology startup with a planned deadline. Practice startup tasks and an project management plan with tasks and hours cost estimates. I have no clue if you have enough hours or resources to outsource before you even get to a point to get any funding let alone a successful launch.

                      There is a tuition to be paid in starting up a practice, solo, group or employed. Good luck.

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                      • #12
                        Thanks to everyone for all your input. It is very much appreciated.

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                        • #13
                          I am trying to do what you are doing. I have about 3 months of fellowship (orthopedics) left. Lets connect. Will PM you.

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                          • #14
                            I agree with what people have said here. A few of my mentors have also been telling me the same things. Taking out personal loans to do this is too risky. I'd recommend finding a hospital to financially support your first year if possible.

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                            • #15
                              There was a really good blog by an ophthalmologist who started his own practice right after residency and documented his challenges along the way. I'll look for it when I have time and post if I find it.

                              EDIT: I'm pretty sure it was by the guy chocolatebear is referring to above.

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