How to Choose the Best Location for Your Rheumatology Practice

When it comes to purchasing a home, it’s all about location. The same rule applies when you’re looking to buy a space for your rheumatology practice. Before you decide on anything, think about your needs as a provider and, more importantly, the needs of your patients. Here are some things to consider when choosing the best location for your rheumatology practice.

Research demographics.

Before you even consider potential locations, you’ll need to put in your due diligence. That means heavily researching demographics and local population data to make sure you are settling into a community that will utilize your services. Keep in mind the rate of growth in the surrounding area. Expanding parts of the country will need more providers to meet demands, so it’s important to look into those communities. Also look at demographic information relevant to your specific practice. If you’re a pediatrician, you might want to focus on neighborhoods with young families, whereas rheumatologists should be focusing on retired communities.

Consider the competition.

The medical field is not known as a service that is directly competitive. However, it is important to consider who might already be serving the patients in the areas you are considering before relocating there. Find out how many providers are nearby, what their specialties are, how you can compete, and how you can enhance the community.

Visibility and accessibility.

You may have the perfect location in the perfect neighborhood, but if you are not visible to your potential clients, none of it matters. A location in a remote part of town might seem cost-effective, but having low visibility will mean spending more money on advertising to get patients. A medical office that’s located on a major road, or in a busy shopping center, can give you maximum visibility and built-in advertising. The location you choose for your rheumatology practice must be accessible and convenient for patients. Examine everything from surrounding roadways to parking lots and make sure access will be painless for your patient base.


Before you take the plunge on the perfect setting, assess the look and feel of your own office space and the building or plaza you’ll be working in. This is essential because patients will equate appearance and cleanliness with quality of care. Take the time to really inspect the general maintenance, landscaping, lighting and tidiness. Keep in mind how the front desk, exam rooms, and offices are set up and designed. Not only should the space make patients feel comfortable, the layout should help facilitate quality patient flow.

This research may take you several months, but in the end it will be worth the time and effort. The choice of an optimal rheumatology practice location that works for you and your patients will have a positive impact not only financially, but personally as well. We hope these tips help ease you through the process and make it a little easier. If you have any ideas to add to this list, let us know on our Facebook page!

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

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