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The human error

Our trio of writers – two doctors and an airline pilot – are co-founders of a business on a mission to improve patient outcomes by helping healthcare professionals understand why errors occur. John Reynard, Tim Kane and Peter Stevenson’s major new series for Independent Practitioner Today gives a startling insight into attitudes and aims to […]

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Using social media to sail out ahead

Will this be the year you get ‘out there’? Grant Brookes presents an independent practitioner’s guide to the dos and don’ts of social media. We cannot ignore the way social media has become ingrained in society. People look to their social channels for answers for almost every kind of problem, as well as to engage […]

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Their views really count

Are you listening to your patients’ feedback? With more private doctors being subject to reviews, Jane Braithwaite gives some excellent tips and advice on handling negative comments. Most practices will be receiving patient feedback on a regular basis. This can range from the quiet chat with the receptionist or medical secretary, to the hand-delivered box […]

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Are you crushed by small print?

Watch out for the rolling contract. Terms and conditions apply, but many doctors get caught out, warns Michael Rourke. Alchemists sought to turn base metal into gold, but their searches and efforts proved fruitless. Physicists have studied the cosmos and determined there can be no perpetual motion due to the laws of thermodynamics. But lawyers […]

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Self-assessment is getting trickier

With the much talk of HM Revenue and Customs’ move to a digitised tax system over the coming years, it is easy to overlook the current system which is still relevant for all. Ian Tongue looks at the self-assessment tax system for individuals and explains some of the key considerations, particularly for those who may […]

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A cure for errors?

Doctor expert witnesses and patients are hugely frustrated with the current costly and over-long procedures in alleged negligence cases. Private consultant entrepreneur Dr Hugh Whitfield outlines the thinking behind his new company’s aims to be a game-changer. Spiralling medical negligence costs are perhaps the greatest threat to the future of the NHS. Over the last […]

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How to ensure you get paid

Invoicing and credit control is a time-consuming task in private practice, but it is essential for obvious reasons. Yet it is the area of practice management that is most often overlooked. Jane Braithwaite reports.     Many doctors and medical secretaries are highly focused on patient care, as they should be of course, and therefore […]

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What to beware if the VAT-man nears

We are all used to paying VAT on many of our day-to-day purchases, but for private practices it is the exception rather than the norm to be VAT-registered. This is in contrast to the vast majority of private businesses outside of the medical profession which are VAT-registered.   Ian Tongue explores the more common situations […]

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Finding your way to a safe lease

Doctors and managers entering practice lease negotiations know it is a complex journey. Bryn Morgan gives some really useful tips to help and warns of the traps. If you have a private practice, you will know that the location, quality and cost of your premises are of fundamental importance to the ongoing success of the […]

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Is there a right time to jump?

Should I stay or should I go? Dr Benjamin Holdsworth on why more doctors are choosing to leave medicine early. It comes as no surprise that recent BMJ figures show a steep rise in the number of doctors retiring early. Medical colleagues at the top of the profession tell us that medicine has changed beyond […]

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Mind the billing banana skins

There are many variables to be considered when taking on practice billing – not least having enough focused time to concentrate on both raising the invoices and chasing the debt. Findlay Fyfe highlights some of the biggest stumbling blocks for many doctors and their practices. Oops! It is all too easy for practices to slip […]

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Be assured of your RMO

Private hospital reliance on the Resident Medical Officer (RMO) system has come under attack from an independent, non-party think-tank. Dr Stephen Drotske and Justyn Tollyfield hit back fighting. In November 2017, the Centre for Health and the Public Interest (CHPI) published a report entitled ‘No safety without liability – reforming private hospitals in England after […]

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