As any PT knows, treating the patient is often the easy part of running a business. It’s the insurance companies and the too often feeble insurance reimbursements that get in the way of having a thriving and healthy physical therapy practice.
It can be frustrating. You became a PT to help people – but you also wanted to make a good living. If you own a physical therapy practice, you may have multiple staff members to pay money to. You have equipment and supplies to purchase. You have insurance premiums you’re paying. Rent. In other words, you aren’t being greedy when you want to bill an insurer as much as possible; you just want as much as you deserve and as much as you can ethically get, to keep your practice humming.
We feel your pain, even as you work on minimizing your patients’ pain.
The bottom-line is that you need to increase your per-hour and per-case reimbursements if you want to maximize your insurance reimbursements at your physical therapy clinic, and that’s why we believe the best way to get the highest return is to essentially make insurance companies an offer they can’t refuse.
That might make you think of some grisly scene from The Godfather, but we simply mean that you should send to your insurer the most thorough and comprehensive PT plan for your patients as possible. That is, you want to offer innovative and noninvasive tests that can diagnose problems accurately, so you can offer exact, evidence-based treatments. The more comprehensive a treatment that you can deliver for the patient, the easier it is to not only successfully bill the insurance company – but to get far higher rates than you might otherwise.
The Benefits of Diagnostic Testing: A Win-Win Scenario
When your physical therapy business model becomes one of diagnostic testing and treating, everybody wins. When you offer a detailed, in-depth treatment plan that covers every angle, the patient triumphs because you diagnose and fix problems that otherwise would go untreated and get worse. The insurers come out ahead, too; untreated problems among patients only become more expensive to fix later. The PT is victorious because the more billing codes you can give an insurer, the higher the insurance reimbursements.
So if you’re looking for ways to get the highest return for your insurance reimbursements for your physical therapy practice, we have four suggestions.
- Invest in a Hands-On Diagnostics membership. It will soon pay off. Typical Hands-On Diagnostics members go from billing around $70 to $100 per session – the national average – to $550 per diagnostic session.
- Offer more services. Hands-On Diagnostics members do just that. They provide the patient with numerous tools that can diagnose sprains, strains, tears, trapped nerves, arthritis, vision problems, neurological issues and neuromuscular conditions. The more disorders and ailments you can diagnose and treat, the higher your insurance reimbursements.
- Offer the finest ultrasound imaging technology around. This is crucial – if you want higher returns on your insurance reimbursements. If you have the finest technology, such as musculoskeletal sonography equipment, and can offer tests like videonystagmography (it measures involuntary eye movement), then it stands to reason that you can bill more to your patients’ insurance companies. If you can’t do that, you’ll have to refer your patients to a practice or PT clinic that can do it – and they can bill insurers and get higher insurance reimbursements.
- Learn to understand code billing better – or work with somebody who does, like Hands-On Diagnostics. For starters, it is challenging to negotiate higher reimbursement rates unless you are on top of your current fee schedules and understand the role the fees are playing in your profit and loss statements. But it also helps if you have the Hands-On Diagnostics equipment that allows PTS to conduct qualified diagnostics tests, which receive higher insurance reimbursements than standard PT codes.
The HODS Physical Therapy Business Model
Bottom-line, we think if you do a little research, and especially if you call HODS to discuss becoming a member, that investing in a Hands-On Diagnostics is, hands down, the best way to get the highest return on your insurance reimbursements. Most importantly, owning a HODS is the best way to diagnose and treat a patient and allow you to focus on what you’ve always wanted to do: worrying about your patients’ pain instead of your PT clinic’s financial pain. Contact us today to learn more about becoming a HODS partner.