Working in your field comes with unique challenges and balancing patient care.

As such, your business management can suffer as you do not have enough time to spend in overseeing the business. Angela Stavropoulos and Kristy Baxter who co-head the medical division at Pilot Partners, explain the importance of the accountant’s role to a medical practice.

It is a known fact that Australian’s spend many hours over a year visiting their medical specialists and health care consultants. As a valued medical practitioner, you look after many patients. But how well do you look after your own medical business?

Regular health checks 

Just as patients have regular check-ups with their health professionals, it is a good practice to check in regularly with your accountant to ensure your medical practice is operating as efficiently as possible. An accountant should not only periodically review your management accounts, which include budgets and cash flow, but they should help you plan for your tax and other financial commitments. By having these regular reviews with your accountant, opportunities for business financial improvement can also be highlighted.

Review your systems and processes 

Your systems are the backbone of your business. With constantly evolving technology and software, your existing methods of running your business may be creating unnecessary paper work. This can all contribute to time inefficiencies. An accountant can assist in streamlining and automating processes for you that not only save time but positively impact your businesses profitability.

Management of financial liabilities 

The Australian Taxation Office regularly releases various publications and guidelines that affect Australian taxpayers and more importantly, how tax is to be calculated on earnings. An accountant is able to assist with ensuring income tax is minimised. It is also important to understand when taxes are due to be paid and how they are to be budgeted for throughout the year. An accountant can assist you with managing your cash flow to ensure that you have the available funds set aside to direct to these liabilities.

Structure of medical practice

It is important that a medical practitioner considers the various structures that are available to run their medical practice from within and the benefits and disadvantages of each structure. There is no “cookie cutter” approach to selecting a suitable structure to operate the medical practice from. Determining the correct structure not only impacts on how income tax is calculated, but also effects other areas which include asset protection, how lending is structured and the ability to bring in new business partners. It is important to note that what may be an appropriate structure to initially establish your medical practice, may not be the correct structure that should be used throughout your medical career, and hence you may need to revise the structure. An accountant has the experience to assist you in determining the most appropriate structure to meet your personal requirements.