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Fam Pract Manag. 2000;7(9):68

Phone triage system

  • Telephone Triage for Pediatric and Adult Populations. Wheeler SQ. Gaithersburg, Md: Aspen Publishers; 1997.

  • Telephone Triage Protocols for Nurses. Briggs JK. Philadelphia: Lippincott; 1997.

  • The Medical Practice Preemployment Tests Book. Borglum KC, Cate DM. Los Angeles, Calif: Practice Management Information Corp; 1996.

  • Medical Practice Forms: Every Form You Need to Succeed. Borglum KC, Cate DM. New York: McGraw-Hill; 1995.

  • Telephone Triage: Theory, Practice and Protocol Development. Wheeler SQ. Albany, NY: Delmar Publishers; 1993.

Part-time practice advice

  • Try to have everyone involved be equally passionate about the endeavor. This will ensure that they work hard to succeed in patient care and as a small business.

  • Spend plenty of time up front getting to know your partners. My partner and I took a weekend retreat to the mountains to talk about our vision and plans for the practice.

  • Take time to discuss controversial issues such as productivity expectations or the prescribing of opiates and benzodiazepines. Since physicians in these arrangements often share patients, it's best if you have similar practice styles and philosophies. Everyone needn't be alike, but understanding each other's beliefs can make differences more tolerable.

  • Keep the lines of communication open, and ask for help when necessary. My partner and I used a therapist for “couples therapy” when we disagreed on some important issues.

  • Delegate parts of running the practice according to the interests and talents of each physician, but ensure that everyone has an important role.

  • Divide everything else equally — call schedule, work hours, salary, vacation time, expenses, etc.

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