TABLE OF CONTENTS
What You Will Find in this Guide
A Quick Note Regarding LLC, Incorporation, and Group Practice
Why this Guide?
How to Use the Guide
I Wrote this Guide for You and Me
Step One – Consider Your Experience & Regional Area / Name Your Practice
TIPS (from an LMFT/Ph.D. who sees only children)
Insurance Panels and Other Notes about Psychotherapists in the area
Assignment: Name Your Business
Step Two – Establish Your Tax Id Number (TIN) – SSN vs EIN
Assignment: Get Your EIN
Step Three – Establish Your Practice Address
Ways to Find an Office
Things to Think About When Choosing an Office
Assignment: Go get your office!
Step Four – Email, Phone, Fax, Internet Access, Scanning
Assignment: Choose a HIPAA Compliant Email
Assignment: Get Your Phone Number
Assignment: Get Your Fax Number (or at least have a plan)
Internet Access at Office (deciding on this step can wait but you need to review it now)
Assignment: Decide on Initial Internet Access
Step Five – Get Your Business License
Step Six – Order Business Cards & Other Signage
Assignment: Order Business Cards
Step Seven – Join Your Professional Organization
For Social Workers
Assignment: To Join or Not to Join That is the Question
Step Eight – Get Insured
Assignment: Purchase liability insurance (professional liability, general commercial liability, additional
insured, and cyber).
Step Nine – Get Your National Provider Identification (NPI)
Assignment: Read this (everyone)
NPI National Provider Number – National Plan & Provider Enumeration System
Assignment: Get Your NPI & Make Note of Your Taxonomy Code
Step Ten – Set Up Your Business Checking Account
Assignment: Get Your Business Checking Account
Assignment: Make a voided check, copy (scan), and upload it to your computer
Step Eleven – Set Your Fees
For Social Workers
Assignment: Read this article
Assignment: Determine your fees and write them in your spiral notebook.
Step Twelve – Decide Who Will Do Your Billing
Cash, CoPays, and Coinsurance Collection
Who Will Do Your Billing?
What’s a Clearinghouse?
Questions You Should Ask a Billing Agency
Assignment: Decide Who Will Do Your Billing Initially
Step Thirteen – Charting – Electronic Health Record (EHR) vs Paper
Paper vs EHR
More About That EHR with Integrated Billing Thing
Assignment: Decide on Initial Charting Method
Step Fourteen – Create Your Forms & Celebrate!
Congratulations! You are set up to see clients!
That First Client Appointment
Chapter Fifteen – To Home Visit or Not to Home Visit
Assignment: Decide if You’ll Do Home Visits Initially
Place of Service
Step Sixteen – Start Applying to Insurance Panels
Assignment: Apply to Commercial Insurance Panels, Medicare, and Medicaid/Medi-Cal
The Paperwork – Don’t Get Discouraged – Practice Patience – Be Here Now! Credentialing
CAQH Credentialing and EnrollHub https://www.caqh.org/
If Eligible, Start with Medicare
A Few Insurance Tidbits Specific to California, Medi-Cal, and Medicare
Single Case Agreements – side note – a possibility when you are not on the panel
Step Seventeen – Get the Word Out – You’re Open for Business!
Assignment: Make a list of potential referral sources.
Assignment: Write and Send Your Introductory Letter
Step Eighteen – Establish Your Professional Will
Assignment: Read This & Prepare a Professional Will
Step Nineteen – Telemental Health/Teletherapy/Telemedicine
California Regulations/Codes for Telehealth
Medicare & Telemedicine
Terminology: Originating site and Distant site
Step Twenty – Compassion Satisfaction, Compassion Fatigue, Burnout
Brief Overview of Compassion Fatigue
Assignment: Read Trauma Stewardship by Laura van Dernoot Lipsky with Connie Burk
Assignment: Write Out the Nuts and Bolts of Your Self-Care Plan
Expenses to Expect – Subletting
Expenses to Expect – Your Own Office
Checklist for Success
User IDs/Names Passwords
About the Author