There are a number of ways speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists, mental health professionals, and other allied health professionals can work online as telepractitioners. These include having your own small or private practice, working through a traditional staffing agency, being employed by a hospital or clinic, or working with a dedicated telehealth provider. There are pros and cons associated with each of these environments.
Solo or Small Private Practice
Having your own business provides you with both flexibility and control in terms of setting your hours and choosing the types of clients with which you want to work. However, you will also be responsible for finding and acquiring your own clients as well as managing payments and collections. In addition, you will not have the benefit and support of colleagues.
Traditional Staffing Agency
With a staffing agency, you have support infrastructure and colleagues, and don’t have to worry about finding your own clients. On the downside, though, there is limited choice in terms of the locations you can work and the clients you will serve.
Hospitals and Clinics
A big benefit of working for a hospital or clinic is that you won’t have to worry about billing and payments, but there is also the drawback of having limited control over your caseload and schedule.
Dedicated Healthcare Providers
Working with a dedicated telehealth provider gives you flexibility and a wide choice of clients. You will also have a supportive infrastructure, and, depending on the provider, ways to connect and collaborate with your peers. It’s important, however, that you are organized, disciplined, and motivated.