When setting up a new practice, frequently one of the most important aspects for a doctor or beauty practitioner is choosing the ideal location for the clinic. This simple decision can time to make a rushed decision can potentially stunt the practice’s potential. What then are the factors that need to be considered as a doctor before you take the plunge?
- Commuting time – Most medical practitioners spend a major part of their time at the clinic, and if you stay quite a distance away, you will not be able to devote much attention to the practice. You should also consider emergencies and when you might be on-call for the practice. If it is a true emergency, you do not want to take hours travelling to respond to it. Therefore the ideal location for your clinic should be at a place that is within a decent radius from your home. This will also enable you to spend quality time with your family without compromising on your patients’ welfare.
- Locale – Decide on your target patients before finalising the location of your clinic. If you choose a rather seedy place, it could turn some patients off visiting your practice. On the other hand, choosing a high-end neighbourhood might lead middle-class patients to think that your services might be too expensive for them. Usually, in such cases, the consultation fees you will charge will help you determine the location of your clinic. The neighbourhood demographics are also important regarding walk-in patients and targeted clientele. Your clinic should be in a clean area away from such pollutants as noise and dust. For example, a clinic above a mechanic’s workshop would typically not be well received by the health and safety authorities. If you are starting a beauty clinic and spa with laser and IPL machine for permanent hair removal and skin rejuvenation procedures, an ideal location would be a residential neighbourhood as female patients who can come in leisurely in the afternoon will be your target.
- Near a hospital – A clinic near a hospital has its own set of pros and cons. First, you will benefit from the fact that many patients want a second opinion from a hospitals diagnoses. If you are a specialist, you will surely benefit from it. But secondly, there is a flip side to it. However, this same aspect will lead a number of clinics to establish themselves in that particular location. To avoid higher competition if you are a newcomer in this field, it is recommended to establish yourself in less competitive environments.
- Frontage – Have a frontage that is adequate to hold your banner and signage. This is not only necessary for your regular patients, but it will also help you gain additional clients. Walk-ins will also depend on your banner and its visibility from the road to know about your clinic there. It is also recommended to base your clinic on the ground floor if you are a specialist in geriatric cases or gynaecology where a few steps can be a mountain for a pregnant or elderly person.
- Plan for the future – A small clinic might save you initial costs but practice will not change clinics frequently, so it is important to consider your future needs. When deciding on a location, keep in mind any plans for future expansion, both in terms of adding new equipment and also potentially hiring other health care specialists on board.
These are some of the factors that you need to keep in mind while choosing the best location for your clinic.