Prescription For Success

Part-Time Profits

The flexibility of working at home part time was one factor that attracted Diedre Mikkelson, owner of AccuTrac Medical Billing in Poway, California, to medical billing. Mikkelson, 35, left a prosperous mortgage-banking career to stay home and start both a family and her company in April 1996. "I didn't want a high-stress job, and I wanted to be able to stay at home with my child. I wanted the best of both worlds," she says.

Today, Mikkelson has four clients and revenues of $2,200 to $2,500 per month, working just 15 hours per week. Her typical monthly business expenses are about $300.

Medical billing services generally charge a per-claim fee of $2 to $3 or 5 percent to 8 percent of the receivables collected. How much each client is charged depends on the services provided and the type of practice. "If you're billing for a neurosurgeon who does maybe 10 surgeries a month at $40,000 a surgery," Mikkelson says, "you're not going to charge as [high a percentage] as you charge a psychiatrist who sees 20 patients a day, four days a week."

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This article was originally published in the June 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Prescription For Success.

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