4 ways to decrease risk in your allied health practice

Being a brilliant therapist does not mean things will always be ok.  Every day, there are inherent risks to running a healthcare business, and they cannot be ignored simply because we have a good rapport with our clients, or get really good outcomes for them.  Things can happen – they really can, and we don’t plan for them, but the best action is to try and avoid them. Here are five ways you can do this now in your own practice.

These steps are not hard to implement. They will take a little bit of your time and commitment, but you will thank yourself down the track.  Applying these does not mean you are risk-free of course – but they are a good place to start.

  1. Set reminders in your calendar around your obligations as a professional. For example, when your AHPRA registration might be due, or when you need to collate evidence for any professional development, or when your working with children checks runs out. This will ensure you don’t miss any important deadlines.  When you have completed this for yourself, make a note in the diary when these things are also due for any staff you have.

  2. Schedule in a monthly walk around your office or workplace to identify any risks you might see around – such as loose carpet, broken electrical cord, or light bulbs that need replacing. Mark off what things need attention, if any, and make a record of when they have been rectified. If you are in the business of home visits, make sure you have a monthly home visit checklist to ensure your home visit procedure works – who will you call if something goes wrong, is the car safe, is your equipment in working order, etc.

  3. Have a working privacy policy that you follow outlining how you will collect, store and use client’s personal information and put some processes in place to ensure the activities you are completing in your practice match your privacy policy. If you are not sure how to write a policy, we have a template for this in our members portal. Not a member? You can join here: maidalearning.com.au/join Once you have your procedures in place, be sure to educate your staff about this area of practice, and better still involve them in the process along the way.

  4. Ensure you write regular treatment notes, that provide information about the assessments you have completed, the outcomes of your sessions, your recommendations and why, and any concerns you have. If you are asked about a session a long time into the future it is hard to remember if you didn’t make a record.  A helpful thing to do if your practice software allows is to print a list of clients each week that you have not written notes for, so you can be sure to go back and cover this before the week is out.

Being proactive in this area of your business is important – not something to put on the ‘to do later’ list!

Happy risk-proofing


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