Listen Now!

Business Talk 24-7

Check below to find this program's broadcast schedule

Year End Planning for Medical Practices

The healthcare environment changes daily and physicians often struggle to keep up with regulatory changes, competition and reimbursement changes. There are many challenges looming: Obamacare, ICD-10 and Meaningful Use. Providers must spend time working on their practices as well as in their Atlanta Business Radio practices to thrive and not just survive. However, practices do not have to stay in a reactive mode. Taking time to plan can put a practice in a proactive mode to be able to anticipate and appropriate respond to opportunities, changes and challenges.

Quarter 4 is the perfect time to take action to minimize tax burden, maximize retirement plans, reconcile inventory, create the coming year’s budget and evaluate the coming year’s capital needs. Taking inventory, updating depreciation schedules, retirement planning, fee schedule analysis, A/R cleanup, tax planning, productivity and compensation evaluation are just some of the year end financial activities that can really make a difference in achieving solid financial performance.

Planning for retention of market share and growth is key to future practice viability yet how many practices have a formal, annual marketing plan. Marketing is often viewed as an expense vs. an investment yet new patients are a critical piece of revenue generation for every practice. The same marketing plans often do not yield different results and how providers reach, communicate with and message to current and potential patients is changing. Year end is a great time to acknowledge referral sources and examine the ROI of existing marketing efforts, brand cohesiveness, content relevancy and process, social media effectiveness and to make adjustments as needed. In a recent poll, 51% of patients said that digital communications would make them feel more valued as a patient and 41% said social media would affect their choice of healthcare providers. Is your practice keeping up with the interactive“new word of mouth” ?

An overall strategic plan can be the differentiating for success. Yet, many providers either don’t know how or feel they don’t need it. Yet, evaluation of Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) to show the current standing of a practice, a SWOT analysis, a competitive overview and then making and implementing a strategic plan will help all businesses be positioned to recognize and capitalize on growth opportunities, assist in overcoming challenges and help protect market share for any business. Why should the business of medical practices be different?

In this segment of The Doctor’s Roundtable, three industry subject matter experts will weigh in on tips, strategies and considerations for year end planning for 2014 for medical practice success. Join Sharon Allred of LW Consulting ( a healthcare strategic planning expert), Beth McCauley of McCauley Marketing and Mark Estroff, CPA and medical practice tax expert as they share their best advice for positioning your practice for success in 2014. Listeners can visit: , and for more information.


Mark Estroff

  • CPA, PYA GatesMoore

Beth McCauley

  • Founder, McCauley Marketing Services

Sharon Allred

  • Principal, LW Consulting


Venous Reflux Disease

Veins have valves to promote sufficient blood return from the lower extremities to the heart. However, when veins in the lower extremities don’t function properly, the blood flows backwards (reflux) and can pool in our legs, ankles and feet. Over time and left untreated, this condition (also called chronic venous insufficiency) can cause spider and varicose veins, swelling, aching, leg cramps, discoloration, restlessness and can lead to venous hypertention. On the mild side, this condition causes veins on the surface that are cosmetic but harmless. On the serious side, it can lead to disability and venous hypertension. Both sexes can be affected by this condition, but women appear to more affected than men. It can also have genetic implications. Gravity, standing on your feet for long periods of time and sedentary lifestyles can exacerbate the conditions. It is a global problem with serious health and economic implications. Approx. 10% of the population or roughly 40 million Americans are reported to have some form of venous reflux disease.

Old treatment of venous reflux disease often involved surgery and saphenous vein “stripping.” With the advent of lasers and imaging technology to measure valve function, newer treatments are often non-invasive and employ thermal energy or injections. Conservative treatments involve compression stockings and lifestyle changes (weight loss, feet elevation, increasing movement). Newer and promising treatments on the horizon include genetic links (Restless Leg Syndrome) and nutraceuticals.

In this segment, Dr. Darelll Caudill, a board certified cardiovascular surgeon and Medical Director of VeinInnovations and his team will discuss the venous reflux disease spectrum, diagnosis, signs and symptoms and treatments. Listeners can visit:, and for more information.


Darrell Caudill, MD, FACS

David Martin, CRNFA

Frank Ferrier, MD, FACS

Alexander Park, MD, FACS

David Park, MD, FACS



Pediatric Food Allergies

Approximately 15 million people have food allergies and about 6 million of them are children. Food allergy occurs when the body’s immune system identifies a specific food as a foreign substance and produces an allergy antibody (IgE) to respond to the substance. Compounding this response is the fact that the most common foods people are allergic to, such as peanut, wheat, soy, eggs are frequently in our diet! Food allergies can be mild to severe and in rare cases, life threatening if they stimulate an anaphylactic reaction.

There are two types of food allergies: fixed (immediate response) and cyclic (delayed). Signs and symptoms of food allergies include: itching in mouth, swelling, GI symptoms (vomiting and diarrhea), hives, tightness in the throat and difficulty breathing. Food allergies should be distinguished from intolerances and sensitivities to food (non immune reactions). Diagnosis may involve: extensive history, nutrition evaluation, lab testing, food challenges, elimination diets and skin testing. Food allergies can also be connected to other allergies. There is no known curative treatment for food allergies at present but treatment involves: strict elimination, education (food labels, meal prep, high risk situation avoidance), emergency planning and availability of emergency medications. There is promising new research in this field- sublingual immunotherapy.

In this segment, Dr. Lakshmi Reddy, a local Atlanta physician that is board certified in adult and pediatric allergy, immunology and asthma will discuss the basics of pediatric food allergy signs/symptoms, diagnosis and treatment. Listeners can visit: and for more information.

Dr. Lakshmi Reddy

  • Medical School at Meharry Medical College
  • Residency completed at Washington University in St. Louis
  • Fellowship in Allergy and Immunology at Medical College of GA
  • Board certified in allergy, immunology and asthma
  • In private practice in Johns Creek, GA



Obstructive Sleep Apnea

A great night’s sleep not only makes us feel great and rested, it improves our health. For some, this is easier said than done! Over 18 million Americans suffer from Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). This is a serious condition in which the the airway collapses or becomes obstructed during sleep causing shallow breathing or breathing pauses which can last from a few seconds to a over a minute. These episodes can be severe , occurring several times per hour. Blood oxygen levels drop can drop during these episodes. Over time, OSA has been linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, depression and accidents while driving. What used to be considered a nuisance can sometimes be not only a quality of life but quantity of life issue.

OSA is the leading cause of daytime sleepiness. Although anyone at any age can exhibit symptoms and be diagnosed with OSA, men seem more likely than women to have this condition. Risk factors include obesity and a family history of OSA. Occasionally, other medical conditions can affect OSA as well, such as congestive heart failure and neuromuscular disorders. Symptoms include loud and chronic snoring, headaches, memory problems, depression, irritability, dry mouth and sore throat. Treatments include Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) and other devices and at times, surgical intervention.

In this segment, Dr. Scott Leibowitz, a board certified internal medicine physician and current President of the GA Association of Sleep Professionals will discuss OSA, good sleep hygiene, diagnosis and treatments for OSA and what’s new in this sleep apnea field. Listeners can visit: and for more information.


Dr. Scott Leibowitz

  • Residency in Internal Medicine completed at Colorado Health Science Center
  • Clinical research and fellowship in Sleep Medicine at Stanford
  • Author and frequent lecturer on sleep medicine
  • Current President of GA Association of Sleep Professionals
  • Now board certified physician in private practice with Laureate Medical Group



Chiropractic Care: Not Just for Pain!

Over 20 million Americans will seek chiropractic care this year! Chiropractic care has been around for over 100 years and involves care of the musculoskeletal and nervous system through use of a hands on, drug free, non-invasive and natural approach. Chiropractors have broad diagnostic skills. This type of care has been increasingly covered by health insurance plans in the US and is appropriate for all ages. Typically, patients turn to chiropractic care seeking relief from back pain, neck pain, joint injuries and headaches. However, chiropractic care is appropriate for all ages and for many types of health conditions, both chronic and acute. Chiropractors use such modalities as heat, spinal manipulation (adjustments), nutrition, acupuncture, biofeedback, labs, imaging and exercise to achieve immediate relief and long lasting results.

This segment will discuss how this specialty can assist with many other types of health issues that the public may not associate chiropractic care with at first, such as: infant care (birth trauma recovery, growth promotion, colic, chronic ear infections), pre and post-natal pregnancy support (low back pain, pelvic support prior to delivery), carpal tunnel syndrome and acid reflux problems (hiatal hernia, GERD). Goals of this type of treatment include immediate and long term relief, decreased drug and surgical intervention and promotion of general health.

In this segment, Dr. Forrest Watts, a Doctor of Chiropractic in Cumming, GA will discuss how chiropractic can help many types of patients beyond neck and back pain. Dr. Watts has also received additional training in acupuncture and sports injuries. Listeners can visit: and for more information.


Dr. Forrest Watts

  • Doctor of Chiropractic from Life University
  • Special training in sports injuries and acupunture
  • Certified to treat carpal tunnel problems
  • Private practice in Cumming, GA


Dr. Forrest Watts