Starting a Portable Radiology Company

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Mobile radiology and imaging technology units provide crucial health screening to isolated regions of the country. The units transport Magnetic Resonance Imaging machines, mammography systems or ultrasound technology in a vehicle that resembles a mobile home. The units travel to a designated community and screen the local population on a first-come, first-served basis. Establishing a portable radiology business involves the creation of a business plan, compliance with licensing requirements, acquisition of equipment and vehicle, carrying malpractice insurance and compliance with public health privacy laws for healthcare providers.

Develop a business plan that includes information about how the business will be funded -- such as through a Small Business Administration loan, venture capital, or a grant. Make budget projections for start-up costs, including costs to purchase the vehicle that will carry the radiology imaging equipment and the imaging equipment itself. Make plans for hiring licensed personnel to operate the equipment. Determine the clients and communities you will served.

Check for and comply with licensing requirements in the states where the mobile radiology unit will travel. Each state has a different procedure for licensing of radiologists. The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists provides information about state registration requirements.

Form an entity to own the business. Choose the form of ownership for the business partnership, non-profit organization, sole proprietorship or for-profit company. Register the portable radiology company with the Secretary of State in the states where the business will operate.

Acquire mobile vehicle and imaging equipment. Contact companies that manufacture mobile imaging equipment and trailers such as OshKosh Specialty Vehicles, Philips Medical Systems or Siemens Medical Solutions USA.

Become a healthcare provider. Contact the Department of Health in the states where the portable radiology company will provide services and become licensed as a healthcare provider. Become a healthcare provider for all of the health management organizations and healthcare insurance companies operating in the region served, as well as with Medicare, to ensure that your company can provide service to the broadest range of the population.

Enroll with an insurer for malpractice insurance. Consult with an insurance company about the amount of coverage necessary. Cover the business and all medical personnel.

Comply with medical-records privacy laws, available at the website of the Department of Health and Human Services. Be familiar with state and national laws regarding medical-record keeping. Draft a privacy policy and make it available to all patients.

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About the Author

Trudie Longren began writing in 2008 for legal publications, including the "American Journal of Criminal Law." She has served as a classroom teacher and legal writing professor. Longren holds a bachelor's degree in international politics, a Juris Doctor and an LL.M. in human rights. She also speaks Spanish and French.

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