Recently, Gage, a former employee of mine and current chiropractic student, had his white coat ceremony. It brought to mind the feelings I had when I first stepped in to intern clinic some 30 years ago. It is exciting, frustrating, overwhelming, and sad at the same time. You finally get to take the practical information you have learned in school and apply it to a real patient and not a classmate. It is also a reminder that your time in chiropractic college is almost over. The final chapters of this stage in your life are coming to a close and soon you will be a licensed, practicing Doctor of Chiropractic.
I didn’t give much consideration to my continued education after I left chiropractic school, but thirty years after graduating, I’m still learning how to keep my practice compliant and in-step with current policy. The transition from student to doctor wasn’t that different than the transition from the practical to the clinical part of my education. As doctors, we will always devote the majority of time treating patients, but we also juggle the ongoing changes in healthcare. I have to spend time staying abreast of new requirements and regulations that affect my practice as well as the responsibilities of a small business owner.
The bottom line is that as doctors and business owners, we have to navigate endless rules and regulations surrounding healthcare. It can be confusing. Often, we don’t know the rules until someone educates us. You will attend conferences each year where you will be cautioned against inducement violations, improper time-of-service discounts, improper coding, and dual fee schedules. You will hear about varying degrees of threats that are looming over your license and your business. Most of us feel far-removed from these threats. We think, “That won’t happen to me.” The reality is that it could happen to any one of us. It is never too early to educate yourself on the rules and regulations you will face after chiropractic school. You can start by signing up for our Tuesday webinar series at chirohealthusa.com/webinars. You will learn about the top concerns in chiropractic from the top consultants in the business. Our goal in offering these webinars is to help you and your future colleagues practice with more peace of mind.
In a recent conversation with Gage, we discussed what he was looking forward to during his time in the clinic. He talked about expanding his documentation skills, using EHR, but mostly treating and helping patients. Toward the end of the conversation, I asked him why he chose chiropractic. He replied, “Chiropractic was personal, and after a few months in the clinic, I couldn’t see myself doing anything else.” The truth is, neither can I.
Dr. Ray Foxworth is the founder and President of ChiroHealthUSA. Since it’s inception in 2007, ChiroHealthUSA has donated over $850,000 to help support state associations, COCSA, F4CP and the CCGPP. The Foxworth Family Scholarship is funded by ChiroHealthUSA and will be awarding one student a $10,000.00 scholarship in August 2016.