Ancillaries in Internal Medicine

April 1, 2006

What are the best ancillaries for internal medicine groups?

Question: What are the best ancillaries for internal medicine groups?

Answer: That depends on what you like to do, what your market's needs are, and what your payers are willing to cover. Here are some of the ideas we've seen lately:

  • CT scans
  • Botox
  • Sleep labs
  • Pulmonary function testing/spirometry
  • Vitamins and other nutrition products
  • Smoking cessation
  • Weight loss clinics
  • DEXA
  • Hearing tests

Some keys to success include:

  • Running your numbers carefully. How exactly will you bill for this new service? Can you make enough on it to cover your expenses? What's the break-even point, and when can you expect to reach it?
  • Understanding exactly how you will ensure you have adequate, motivated staff to provide the service.
  • Thinking about the impact this new service will have on your patient base. For example, offering Botox can change the type of patients you have in your waiting room.
  • Having a plan for marketing the service to new and existing patients.
  • Evaluating potential competitors. Can you out-perform them?
  • Planning your scheduling for the service.