The concept of cash-based healthcare is growing. Health insurance coverage continues to diminish. The demand for self-pay services is more prevalent than ever. With change arises new challenges healthcare providers must address and overcome. Physical therapists are no exception. In some ways PTs have are the hardest. The advent of prior-authorizations on physical therapy cpt codes is one of the many hurdles that are complicating billing practices. That doesn’t mean that cash-based physical therapy models don’t come with there own set of problems.

Certain challenges are inherited when a higher percentage of your patients are self-pay. These challenges are not deal-breakers, but not addressing them can impede on your future success. Here are 3 things to consider if you want your self-pay practice to thrive:

1.       Emphasis on Value-Based Care

 The service-based clinic model is common with practices that bill insurance. However, you will find that self-pay patients adherence to this clinic model is low.

Since these patients will be paying out-of-pocket their expectations tend to be higher. Passive and hand-off procedures can lack engagement, leading to poor adherence. Finding ways to increase patient engagement will improve the perceived “value” of the visit. This can be done in a few different ways. In a lot of cases this means the provider spends more time directly interacting with the patient. This is usually the easiest and most cost effective way to add more value to the patient experience. The caveat is it lowers how much volume a clinic can handle on any given day. Staff can act as extensions of the provider can counteract this limitation. Ultimately, quality human connections will be a priority of your self-paying patients so find an effective way to provide that in their experience.

2.       The Internet is a Tool that can Make You or Destroy You

Patients have access to virtually unlimited information with the internet. This is not always a good thing. For one, many patients due research prior to treatment. Internet content is design to attracted clicks and views, which can lead to unrealistic expections. This can be difficult to overcome. A great place to start is to create informational content that people can access prior to coming to your clinic. This way YOU are the provider establishing realistic expectations for their experience at the clinic.

You can further capitalize on this trend and get more aggressive with online marketing. Acquiring new patients will be one of the most challenges aspects of growing a cash-based practice. Find what works, and consult an expert if you are struggling to see any success.

3.       Stay Compliant

There is this stigma that cash-based clinic models bypass compliance mandates. Don’t be fooled. Minimizing the financial reliance on insurance revenue can reduce administrative burden, maintaining compliant clinic operations is still a high priority. In some ways, expanding one’s cash-based volume may leave them susceptible to compliance violations. That is where Patient Options comes in.

Patient Options has helped clinics across the country implement compliant discounted fees for their self-pay patients. Now it has never been more affordable to join. For just $1 can try us on for size. There are no long term-commitments. Click here for more information.