Organizing clients for accounting record-keeping
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Hi!

New to solo practice, down from a large group practice where we had support staff to do the administrative heavy lifting.  What a steep learning curve!’

I am curious how y’all organize your clients for record-keeping purposes (such as for an excel spreadsheet of income and expenses). I assume it would NOT be by name or any other PHI...

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    CORRINE SHELTON

    My response not related to your question Kathleen. I am responding because you are the first person to allude to the difficulty in navigating the transition from having an administrative support staff to doing it yourself. I wish more people would share their struggles with this transition because I feel quite alone in my frustration with it all and not quite sure that I should stick with simple practice.

    But, I can tell you that private practice is so very rewarding! I get ALL my referrals from Psychology today. I called a few therapists on their site to ask if signing up with was a good idea and everyone I called told me they advertised no place else and had all the clients they needed. I've found that to be 100% true. I've even had to refer clients to a colleague of mine since my schedule is as full as I want it to be. I wish you all the best and phenomenal success in your new solo practice!

    My response not related to your question Kathleen. I am responding because you are the first person to allude to the difficulty in navigating the transition from having an administrative support staff to doing it yourself. I wish more people would share their struggles with this transition because I feel quite alone in my frustration with it all and not quite sure that I should stick with simple practice.

    But, I can tell you that private practice is so very rewarding! I get ALL my referrals from Psychology today. I called a few therapists on their site to ask if signing up with was a good idea and everyone I called told me they advertised no place else and had all the clients they needed. I've found that to be 100% true. I've even had to refer clients to a colleague of mine since my schedule is as full as I want it to be. I wish you all the best and phenomenal success in your new solo practice!

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    Cathleen A. Rea

    Hello Corrine!  Thank you so much for those words of support!  I am actually transitioning to a practice two hours away from my current location, where I am very known, to one where I am an unknown except for my friends and colleagues there!  I am plowing through with SimplePractice, believing that it will get easier in time!  It is so exciting to move from heavy heavy managed care and heavy heavy overhead to fee for service and a streamlined expense line!

    Thanks, too, for the encouragement to Psychology Today!  Its been on my list, but I have been staring at the "website" mountain, instead!!  Switching paths at your recommendation!

    Oh, BTW, I think i am going to organize my clients, for accounting purposes with 18001, 18002, 18003, to 190xx next year, etc.

    Happy to have more conversation on these things!

    Cathy

     

    Hello Corrine!  Thank you so much for those words of support!  I am actually transitioning to a practice two hours away from my current location, where I am very known, to one where I am an unknown except for my friends and colleagues there!  I am plowing through with SimplePractice, believing that it will get easier in time!  It is so exciting to move from heavy heavy managed care and heavy heavy overhead to fee for service and a streamlined expense line!

    Thanks, too, for the encouragement to Psychology Today!  Its been on my list, but I have been staring at the "website" mountain, instead!!  Switching paths at your recommendation!

    Oh, BTW, I think i am going to organize my clients, for accounting purposes with 18001, 18002, 18003, to 190xx next year, etc.

    Happy to have more conversation on these things!

    Cathy

     

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    ARLENE G. GALLAN

    I have been in both supported environment as well as a stand alone practice-but always with an off site biller. I'm increasingly overwhelmed with the insurance companies needs and the lack of ease managing all the needs required to collect insurance support. I have an opportunity to relocate to a fee-for-service environment and was heartened by the comments you made about transitioning, Corrine. I am attracted to tele-health, but have to come up with a system of billing that will be swift. I use a Square to charge credit card paying patients, now. I think that could be the swiftest manner of doing the tele-health patients. 

    Also, i wanted to comment on the advertising For 15 years, i have done no advertising EXCEPT Psychology Today. It is a fantastic source of referrals. When i first opened, i visited my own medical doctors and gave my business cards. Business has been forthcoming over the years from the community, former patients referring fam and friends, etc. I am a fan of sending thank you notes to referring colleagues too. Its all been really powerful. 

    I have been in both supported environment as well as a stand alone practice-but always with an off site biller. I'm increasingly overwhelmed with the insurance companies needs and the lack of ease managing all the needs required to collect insurance support. I have an opportunity to relocate to a fee-for-service environment and was heartened by the comments you made about transitioning, Corrine. I am attracted to tele-health, but have to come up with a system of billing that will be swift. I use a Square to charge credit card paying patients, now. I think that could be the swiftest manner of doing the tele-health patients. 

    Also, i wanted to comment on the advertising For 15 years, i have done no advertising EXCEPT Psychology Today. It is a fantastic source of referrals. When i first opened, i visited my own medical doctors and gave my business cards. Business has been forthcoming over the years from the community, former patients referring fam and friends, etc. I am a fan of sending thank you notes to referring colleagues too. Its all been really powerful. 

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    Cathleen A. Rea

    Thanks for the suggestion about sending thank you notes, Arlene!  So far, I have had several people referred who have, ultimately, declined because I am doing fee-for-service.  I am hesitant to reach back to the referral source as I do not have client permission to do that....I do think it is important tho, so I am thinking on the wording...

    Cathy

    Thanks for the suggestion about sending thank you notes, Arlene!  So far, I have had several people referred who have, ultimately, declined because I am doing fee-for-service.  I am hesitant to reach back to the referral source as I do not have client permission to do that....I do think it is important tho, so I am thinking on the wording...

    Cathy

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    Matthew E. Dash

    It’s a great thought to be cognizant of privacy as you don’t want to be in a situation where no good deed goes unpunished.  I’ve sent thank-yous for referrals, and was intentionally vague keeping the thank you short and sweet where it is entirely based on expressing thanks / gratitude.  If memory serves correct, I think the thank-yous I have sent were only to other professionals such as physicians and only did so when there were multiple referrals so I could just keep the brief note entirely as a way to say thanks for thinking of me.  Because there were multiple referrals - there could be no indication as to how many referrals I was contacted by and if I even saw them for an appointment.

    It’s a great thought to be cognizant of privacy as you don’t want to be in a situation where no good deed goes unpunished.  I’ve sent thank-yous for referrals, and was intentionally vague keeping the thank you short and sweet where it is entirely based on expressing thanks / gratitude.  If memory serves correct, I think the thank-yous I have sent were only to other professionals such as physicians and only did so when there were multiple referrals so I could just keep the brief note entirely as a way to say thanks for thinking of me.  Because there were multiple referrals - there could be no indication as to how many referrals I was contacted by and if I even saw them for an appointment.

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    Nancy Faye

    As an adjunct to all the good information on this question,  I am transitioning over to Simple Practice autopay, and as yet I have had no one that I've discussed this with that doesn't want to give me there credit card information.  Perhaps this is a new addition since these questions were asked.  I was using square, and still use it occasionally, but it does seem that Simple Practice has considered all angles of business.

    The only thing I use files for now are the statements, EOB's I recieve from insurance companies that do not use Enrollments.  Eventually I can save so much time.  I think so far it's the note taking that is making this such a wonderful tool.  And it's still a little challenging to think that all of my documentation is online.  I can even take pictures and upload them of the EOB's when necessary, which almost completely saves me from any document storing at all.

    As an adjunct to all the good information on this question,  I am transitioning over to Simple Practice autopay, and as yet I have had no one that I've discussed this with that doesn't want to give me there credit card information.  Perhaps this is a new addition since these questions were asked.  I was using square, and still use it occasionally, but it does seem that Simple Practice has considered all angles of business.

    The only thing I use files for now are the statements, EOB's I recieve from insurance companies that do not use Enrollments.  Eventually I can save so much time.  I think so far it's the note taking that is making this such a wonderful tool.  And it's still a little challenging to think that all of my documentation is online.  I can even take pictures and upload them of the EOB's when necessary, which almost completely saves me from any document storing at all.

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    Eve Schutt

    I have been in private practice 4 years, 23 years community mental health, 1 year Simple Practice.  What I understand the question to be is about accounting, it seems that simple practice does that well about what is owed or earned.  I have been using an outside biller just to allow me to focus on building my business, I am now going to use the in house billing simple practice offers.  When you are first starting a business it is ok to pay others to do the “heavy lifting” .  Figure out which part of your business you like least and farm that out.  Or see less clients and do it all yourself.  You are running a business now so you have to think like a business owner and use the tools you need to run your business well, with integrity.  If you need a spreadsheet, using a client number reduces exposure.  Think first about why you want or need a tool.  I want to know my overall income or I want to know my income on a certain day or I want to know how much I have earned from a particular client warrant different calculations or tracking methods.  Or I have to turn info into a biller or pull info out for taxes or to know the health of my business.  I use different tools, a running paper log off all income and outgo so I know the status of my finances.  I back it up by putting a copy of the log in a locked off site location, in case the internet goes down I could still create numbers for taxes.  I think of it as my master list.  I keep an excel budget sheet for each month, my computer has a tendency to crash and take data with it so I don’t mind a double entry system.  Simple practice tracks who paid or insurance paid so I dont need names in my spreadsheet or log.   

    As far as feeling alone, I live in a rural area, there are only a few counselors here.  I contacted all of them and started a Private Practice Providers meeting where we could network once a month.  This has helped immensely to not feel alone and referrals to each other and compare notes on struggles and joys of private practice.

    I have been in private practice 4 years, 23 years community mental health, 1 year Simple Practice.  What I understand the question to be is about accounting, it seems that simple practice does that well about what is owed or earned.  I have been using an outside biller just to allow me to focus on building my business, I am now going to use the in house billing simple practice offers.  When you are first starting a business it is ok to pay others to do the “heavy lifting” .  Figure out which part of your business you like least and farm that out.  Or see less clients and do it all yourself.  You are running a business now so you have to think like a business owner and use the tools you need to run your business well, with integrity.  If you need a spreadsheet, using a client number reduces exposure.  Think first about why you want or need a tool.  I want to know my overall income or I want to know my income on a certain day or I want to know how much I have earned from a particular client warrant different calculations or tracking methods.  Or I have to turn info into a biller or pull info out for taxes or to know the health of my business.  I use different tools, a running paper log off all income and outgo so I know the status of my finances.  I back it up by putting a copy of the log in a locked off site location, in case the internet goes down I could still create numbers for taxes.  I think of it as my master list.  I keep an excel budget sheet for each month, my computer has a tendency to crash and take data with it so I don’t mind a double entry system.  Simple practice tracks who paid or insurance paid so I dont need names in my spreadsheet or log.   

    As far as feeling alone, I live in a rural area, there are only a few counselors here.  I contacted all of them and started a Private Practice Providers meeting where we could network once a month.  This has helped immensely to not feel alone and referrals to each other and compare notes on struggles and joys of private practice.

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    Kathy Harting

    I so appreciate the comments here. I am part time private practice and still part time mental health center. I haven't started a psychology today subscription yet, but would like to begin building and get out of the clinic. I love the clients there, but the grind is too much.

    I live in a Midwest City of decent size, and still find it lonely...it can be challenging no matter where u live, I think.

    I'm also single and wonder how others in private practice have addressed getting healthcare. Anyone know of group plans for our profession?

    I have used an Excel spreadsheet to track all my expenses for taxes. I keep all receipts in monthly envelopes and fill the spreadsheet in regularly.

    Thanks

    I so appreciate the comments here. I am part time private practice and still part time mental health center. I haven't started a psychology today subscription yet, but would like to begin building and get out of the clinic. I love the clients there, but the grind is too much.

    I live in a Midwest City of decent size, and still find it lonely...it can be challenging no matter where u live, I think.

    I'm also single and wonder how others in private practice have addressed getting healthcare. Anyone know of group plans for our profession?

    I have used an Excel spreadsheet to track all my expenses for taxes. I keep all receipts in monthly envelopes and fill the spreadsheet in regularly.

    Thanks