From legal to insured, what it’s about before you get the wheels rolling with a mobile chiropractic clinic
The highlight of a mobile chiropractic clinic is that you can bring your office to your patient’s location. Whether they are at home or at work, you can bring chiropractic care to them from the comfort of your home.
From your patient’s point of view, bring the office to them so they don’t have to sit in your waiting room or get stuck in traffic driving to your office. For the mobile chiropractor, this model requires less setup than a stationary business, and it takes a lot of the pressure and problems off your hands in a traditional practice. A mobile chiropractic clinic revolves around what you do in a conventional “stationary” practice. This model gives you the freedom and flexibility to design a better lifestyle for you. It allows you a better work-life balance and also takes care of the ideal clients you have always wanted.
Let’s talk about a few key business components that are required before you can start your own mobile practice.
Mobile Chiropractic Clinic: Legal Obligations
Along with a name for your mobile business, one of the key components that you need to consider is the best business structure you want for your mobile practice. Depending on which state you wish to practice in, there are a few business structures to choose from. You can start a sole proprietorship, an LLC, or a business.
Note that in some states, professionals can only establish a professional company. Every corporate structure has its advantages and disadvantages based on legal and financial tax considerations. Choosing the right business structure is important and must be decided by you before you can register for your company. Therefore, when building your business structure, seek help from an attorney who is familiar with solo chiropractic practices.
Next, you need to get insurance coverage for your mobile chiropractor clinic. You must still have professional liability insurance (wrongdoing) and general liability insurance (third party liability insurance), as is the case with all conventional practices.
In addition, you will need auto insurance if you use your personal vehicle for your mobile business. Depending on what percentage of the time you use your personal vehicle for your mobile business, you can qualify for commercial car insurance. Commercial auto insurance can offer you a different level of coverage. Contact your insurance company and find out what they can recommend for your needs.
Technology and tables
How do you translate a conventional practice into a mobile chiropractic clinic? How do you bring the mobile office to your customers? Sounds impossible, but it isn’t. Let’s wrap it up so you can see how to get started with a mobile practice.
The first thing to consider is the type of techniques that you will be practicing. Are you a manual adjuster versus an instrument adjuster? Take into account the specific techniques and whether they require a specific table. If so, there are portable tables that will suit your needs.
If a particular table is not required, consider what type of patient you will see. Are they pediatric or sports-related or general family patients? Take all of this into account when choosing the table that is required for your mobile practice.
Now, with your technique and the table you selected, let’s look at the type of diagnostic or assessment tools you will need for your appointments. Think about the tools you need to bring with you in order to conduct a comprehensive assessment of your customers. These could be blood pressure cuffs, handheld devices, or other chiropractic instruments that you think are necessary for your assessment.
I want you to think about the absolute tools you need to get the job done. Think about the types of patients you want to work with and the essential tools you will need to use. Also, think about the diagnostic assessment that you can refer to. For example, do you have an X-ray center that you trust to send your patients for imaging?
Treatment tools and accessories
The next component to look at is what you need to do the actual chiropractic or services – the treatment tools and accessories needed to care for your patient.
Do you just want to make adjustments or do you want to incorporate some other services like portable modalities, soft tissue tools or rehab devices? What specific tools do you need along with the accessories that you can add to your treatment tools? Simple accessories can be hot and cold packaging, soft tissue gels, sports bands, resistance bands, etc. What do you need to provide your services to your patients on site?
You can also consider putting items up for sale. Things like offering shoe insoles, cervical pillows, nutritional supplements, etc.
You need technology for documentation, scheduling, SOAP notes, billing, etc. You want to keep this as paperless as possible. You will need a laptop or tablet for this, as some software does not allow mobile access.
The tablet or laptop comes in handy if your patient has not completed the admission form in advance or if the spouse has chosen to be under your care during your stay. There are also times when customers are not comfortable saving their credit card information and you can paste it into your software at the end of the appointment.
Another important aspect is your own WiFi or hotspot. This is very important as you don’t want to ask your patients for their private WiFi access when they need to access your software portal – it just seems less professional. With your own WiFi or hotspot, your mobile practice looks like a professional virtual office. Also, if you see how to create documentation and diagrams between your mobile appointments, it is important to have your own WiFi or hotspot.
Mobile pros and cons
Not only does this model have low startup and overhead costs, it’s a unique niche business model, and your potential patients can find you when they’re looking for a mobile chiropractor, as everything has an app these days and virtually every business has moved to mobile in order to to serve its community, especially during this pandemic.
With the mobility and convenience that a mobile practice offers, you can take your mobile office with you wherever your patient wants it. If your client works from home, you can go to their home or there may be times when you need to go to their work office. The most important aspect is that you are spending time with them, they trust you, and you have become their doctor for advice. As a result, you have higher patient loyalty, which means you don’t have to keep looking for new patients.
The disadvantage of the mobile model is that not all techniques can be implemented in a mobile practice. Some specific techniques require a specific table to perform the adjustment. Some of the required devices may not have a portable option either. It is evident that this is not a large volume practice. So if you are thinking of seeing 200 to 300 patients a week, this model is definitely not for you.
A mobile chiropractic clinic is a premium patient service that allows you to create a fulfilling practice that you love and a unique approach to providing chiropractic care. It gives your patients the experience they may not get in a traditional practice, and gives you the freedom and time to build the ideal practice of your dreams.
SIMON TEO, DC, is a 100% cash-based entrepreneur and mentor in mobile practices. He owns Get Adjust Now and has been a mobile chiropractor since 2016. His mission is to help chiropractic graduates start their own mobile practice and shape their ideal lifestyle. He can be reached at email@example.com or via getadjustnow.com/providers.