The following is a case study of Lara Berman, a Physiotherapist based in Bryanston, Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa.
About Lara Berman
When I left school, I thought I wanted to go into paediatrics but after some research and considering the hours of a paediatrician and knowing that I wanted my own family one day, I decided to go into physiotherapy for kids. I knew I wanted to work with kids. I completed my four year degree, then did my one year community service and then stayed on for another year and a half.
I gained work experience for a few years working in the Neonatal ICU and then came to work in partnership with a physiotherapist in Bryanston. In 2017 the opportunity came up for me to take over the practice from her.
What is the current setup of your practice?
The building here is owned by a landlord and there are multiple practitioners who rent space for their private practices. There is a receptionist who fields the various clients but admin is my own responsibility. I have also extended my practice to a space in Blairgowrie so I also have clients there as well.
What attracted you to the IsoForge product?
I found I was spending a lot of my time on admin and having to find time after hours to do this. I would see clients all day and then still have to go home after that and spend time on admin. There is already a certain amount of client admin work, such as recording notes that only I can do, and like I say, it got to the point where I felt all I was doing, was admin and it didn’t make sense to me that I was spending so much time on this.
I submit a lot to medical aids and have to follow up with medical aids. I don’t have the time or inclination for this. The best feeling is when I get a message from Shaz at IsoForge saying there was a problem, here’s the reference number and it is sorted out!
Because of time constraints, I found I wasn’t submitting medical claims regularly enough, whereas now that gets done for me by Shaz, which means my cash flow has improved.
A personal preference of mine is that I don’t like having to deal with the financial side of things directly with a client as I feel that detracts from the therapeutic relationship.
What are your current experiences with IsoForge?
Shaz is amazing, if I message her, she replies literally within minutes I can say. I feel like the admin side has a good flow now.
What do you like most about IsoForge?
Medical aid follow ups! Having more time to not focus on clients and not having to worry about admin and payments.
Where do you feel IsoForge Falls Short for you at the moment?
Tax – I’m not sure if I’m doing the right thing, so I would like to chat about this. And the app Xero?
Marketing – I understood I would have help developing a website and IsoForge taking over the domain payments.
Additional comment :: When I studied, you don’t learn anything about running your own business and so I don’t have this knowledge. I’d love to have more information on running a practice, tax information, where I can save money, what I can and can’t do around finances with regards to the law etc.
Why don’t you rather hire a secretary or PA to assist with your admin?
To be honest, I wouldn’t be able to pay someone what I pay IsoForge per month, for what the IsoForge team do for my practice. Also in private practice, the work can be intermittent sometimes, so I would not necessarily be able to keep someone busy 100% of the time.
The team at IsoForge gets the work done well, they are fast, responsive, and there is no waiting game for me when I have queries with them. So it works well.
Did you look at any other business practice management solutions? Why didn’t you go with them?
Not really. We used the practice management software for about a year and half and it was a natural progression from there.
What are your professional passions and future plans for your practice?
I have always loved working with kids, even when I was younger. I loved caring for children. I am naturally nurturing and love helping people. I find it very easy to communicate and negotiate with children and with them being physically smaller, they are easier to guide with regard to anything physical that I need to show them! I find it very rewarding to see kids developing.
I would like to grow and expand the practice and then to be able to take a bit of a step back when I have a family of my own.