So you are considering opening a medical practice in 2019? Then now is the right time to start planning and organising your business. Private healthcare comes in a wide variety of forms and an increasing number of people are turning to it as the NHS suffers under the weight of expectation. But what are the primary considerations for a medical practice?
Understanding the regulations
Before you think about starting a practice, you need to work with experts to ensure you comply with all relevant regulations. These can include:
- Care Quality Commission
- Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency
- Human Tissue Authority
- Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority
- General Medical Council
Not all of these might apply for example, if you have just finished botox training in Glasgow then you don't need the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority. But you will also need to look at insurance and indemnity requirements as well as demands from the local authority for the type of practice you are opening.
You will also want to have a lawyer work on the patient contracts to ensure everything is done correctly to protect both you and the patient. You will want clear terms and conditions about what you do and the scope of services.
Following the changes with GDPR, data protection is an even more hot topic than before. You need clear data protection policies and practices in place and to be certain you know what to do in the event that something does go wrong. Healthcare data protection is a very controversial topic and you don't want to fall on the wrong side of it.
Technology for services
There's a growing use of technology in healthcare services and you will want to invest in this from the outset. Smartphone apps and online services are an excellent way to help patients but there are also regulatory and legal requirements you must be aware of when offering these services.
You will also want to lay out the contracts for any clinicians and other staff coming to work in the practice. Again a lawyer specialising in employment law will be a good bet for this. Lay out requirements, working hours, holidays and other key parts of the employment for potential staff to be able to view before committing to working with you so there are no causes for problems at a later date once they are an employee.