One of the most common questions we receive from entrepreneurs interested in starting a medical transportation business is “How do you know what advice is good advice because there is so much conflicting information online?”
Needless to say, this is a very good and justified question because the internet is so grossly flooded with nonsense; much of it authored by people with no firsthand experience in the medical transportation industry.
A quick online search for anything regarding “how to start a medical transportation business” will yield a number of sites offering “free” advice. The problem is “free” advice tends to be the most costly advice. It can be offered by anyone hiding behind a computer screen regardless of level of knowledge or experience.
Unfortunately, because a lot of online advice is outrageously misleading, it can cost readers and unsuspecting entrepreneurs valuable time, money, effort, and damaged reputations.
A recent article published on ehow.com offered “The 9 steps to starting a medical transportation company.” These steps are (1) find a vehicle, (2) purchase vehicle and liability insurance, (3) obtain a license from the state if required, (4) check for local license requirements, (5) arrange to accept insurance, (6) establish fees and policies for business, (7) market your medical transportation business, (8) hire employees, and (9) set up a dispatch center.
Needless to say, the lack of industry specific experience by this author couldn’t be more obvious. In fact, their nonsensical advice is nothing short of destructive. Such ill advised strategies encourage unsuspecting readers to invest money in vehicle acquisition, insurance, and associated assets before doing any type of target market research. That is absolutely insane!
It’s obvious this author and many others writing online posts and books regarding the medical transportation industry have never started, built, or sold a successful NEMT business. Their lack of firsthand experience leaves their post and books lacking real substance, sound financial advice, and effective strategies.
As we all know, there is great opportunity in this industry. The elderly population is growing exponentially. With the repeal of Obamacare there are dynamic and real changing in the medical industry that will influence all support services to include NEMT and home care. But with such growth and changes you need to be exceptionally caution on what information your study and invest.
These nonsensical sites and inexperienced authors always fail to mention the many changes affecting our industry. For example, they never mention deregulation in many, many states. They never discuss how Obamacare created a feeding frenzy for Medicaid brokers and the impact on transportation providers. They never discuss the explosion of ride share programs and how it affects NEMT providers. They make no mention on how HMOs and other managed care organizations are utilizing NEMT services. They fail to discuss various insurance considerations and the cost to NEMT providers and so much more.
Again, demand and opportunity are continuing to growing in the medical transportation industry. It’s obvious. However, if you are serious about starting a NEMT business then you need to be exceptionally cautious of the advice and counsel you consider. Not all advice is the same.
If an authors isn’t actively involved in the industry and can’t speak of the many influences of our changing industry to include changes in Medicaid, with brokers, the many ride share programs, various insurance concerns, the repeal of Obamacare, and more, then you need to disregard their publications.
Additionally, if you wish to be successful with a growing business versus a perpetual independent operator, then you need to learn how to legitimately build, grow, and promote your brand.
You need to learn how to cultivate multiple sources of diverse and profitable revenue.
You need to learn techniques and strategies for protecting and preserving your business from potential liability issues.
You need to know how to maximize various tax laws to increase your profit margin.
You need to learn how to pursue and establish profitable contracts and services agreements with various hospitals, facilities, and government agencies.
You need to learn how to diversify your business to limit vulnerabilities in the economy.
You even want to know how to develop an effective exit strategy and prepare your business for a profitable future sale.
Any book or online publication failing to discuss these and many more key topics in detail should cause you to run and run fast! These posts and publications are designed to boost advertising and SEO performance and make a quick sale for the seller. They are not designed to offer in-depth guidance and certainly don’t offer follow-up advice or instruction.
As the saying goes, “buyer beware.” If you follow the incompetent and destructive advice from bogus sites and resources you risk squandering capital investment, wasting time and effort. If you are serious about starting a new or growing an existing medical transportation business then be forewarned on where and what advice you consider.
The NEMT and home care opportunities are continuing to grow exponentially. But to be profitable, to be successful, and to be sustainable you must increase your industry-specific education. Seek and invest in realistic and highly targeted material from those experienced in the industry.
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