My new medical practice is picking up fast and my homemade Libreoffice Calc spreadsheet is quickly becoming cumbersome to track patient visits, accounts receivable, overhead reconciliation, etc. Most practices use some sort of practice management software to handle accounting as well as scheduling, paying bills, submitting insurance claims, etc. but my budget can't afford to pay for overpriced software. Besides, I like to do things my own way, as well as support open source software. (I've already determined that I don't need this function to come from my electronic charts)
Google searching didn't yield any templates and all of the accounting programs found were built for traditional businesses with purchasing, warehousing, human resource management, etc. that aren't adaptable for my needs and are unusable. You wouldn't think that I would be the first physician to attempt something like this, but the only thing that I could find is a design plan here: http://www.databaseanswers.org/data_models/
So now, I'm considering importing my spreadsheet into Libreoffice Base and slowly developing a custom accounting program for myself. However, I have no experience with databases and I don't want to spend a large amount of time on this if the amount or complexity of coding is beyond what I am willing to sacrifice from my study time. After browsing through textbooks at the local B&N, the first 1/3 of most books on MySQL, Filemaker Pro, and Access seem applicable for what is needed (complex mathematical modeling and data analysis is overkill), but I'm still hesitant about heading into this endeavor if the work load is larger than I care to handle.
So, is it doable for someone with remote programming experience (qbasic, visual basic) and basic spreadsheet knowledge to code a simple custom accounting database? If so, is LibreOffice Base sufficient? What program or textbook would you recommend?