If I were to write a book covering the most frequently asked questions I get in my clinic, this one might be very near the top of the list.
Why didn’t my last physical therapist do this for me?
The reason I get this question so often has to do with many people believing that all physical therapy clinics basically provide the same care. This is fundamentally not true of any business regardless of what industry they are in. There are good and bad dentists, restaurants, mechanic shops, and certainly good and bad physical therapists. Now I would never bash my profession as a whole, or even in part, but many PT’s are handcuffed by the policies of the business they work for, and the regulations of the insurance company they are working for. YES! I said that correctly. When you go to a PT that is in-network with your insurance, the PT is working for the insurance company, not you (the patient). You see, that in-network PT office will provide services that will best be reimbursed by the insurance company. Sadly, some services that would be more effective in relieving your pain, or getting you back to the activities you are missing out on right now may get passed on due to time constraints, or how well the company gets paid to provide that treatment.
In 2021 there is yet again, another round of cuts to reimbursement for Medicare services to PT’s. While we PT’s have done miraculous things with the reimbursement we have gotten over the years, the simple fact that wages and expenses continue to climb, and with revenue being cut, there is little choice in the matter than to offer “bare bones” service. I see offices pack the schedule with 4 or more clients at one time spread across a PT, an aide, a volunteer or a student. Not always does this fit with what the legal standard, or ethical standard of what can be billed as PT “skilled intervention”, but some businesses are desperate to stay profitable, and stay open. This was actually the topic of my research thesis in PT school. “Managed care’s effects on patient outcomes and clinical decision making” (The actual title is much longer, but I’ll spare you the boredom!!)
When I ask my clients what a session looks like at some of the other clinics they have gone to, there is a pattern that I see across the board. First, they say that the place is super busy and hard to get appointments. When they do go, the intake process is a problem with too much paperwork. There is commonly a wait time to be seen. They get put on a piece of equipment to warm up for up to 10 minutes each time they go. After a few sessions they take them through the same routine of exercises that they have been performing at home. For my athletes, they are either bored, not challenged, or discharged when they can do regular day to day activities like walk or climb stairs, but aren’t ready to get back to running, cutting, jumping or sport.
The other thing that my clients have been treated elsewhere tell me is that they have no idea what the cost is for a session when they use their insurance, and the ones that have actually tried looking at the explanation of benefits that the insurance sends them after the session has been billed…they can’t make heads nor tails of what the insurance actually paid the therapist for the session. Their main concern (and rightfully so) is that they don’t have a bill, or that it is clear of how much of a bill there is.
Here is the beauty of our clinic, and the reason people are treated so differently here to prompt all of the questions.
We are very transparent about what our sessions cost, and regardless of your financial situation, if you want our help, we have affordable packages and payment plans to help you access the care you need. Our sessions are not cookie-cutter recipes of protocols that have been copied for decades. We have been personalizing programs from day 1 in business, and in fact, you can work with the therapist based on your condition and choose the length of session you want. For instance, maybe you know that there is a component of exercise needed for you to heal at the fastest rate possible, but you know you won’t do it at home and you want to spend the extra time in the clinic to ensure you do absolutely everything you can to get better… You can choose to do that. Or , if you know you will be diligent with a self-care program at home, and you want to focus on the hands-on parts of treatment and have a few exercises filmed so you know what to do at home, that can be arranged.
We spend the first part of our sessions hands-on with most of our clients to ensure the muscles are relaxed, activated and prepped for use before we do exercise, to ensure you don’t leave worse than you walked in. We are constantly testing and retesting your movement to ensure what we are doing is working. Anyone that is hands-on with you is someone that holds a license, and isn’t a volunteer or a student just learning at your expense.
We provide revolutionary treatment options like cold LASER therapy that many other offices don’t. The cold LASER we use was the original device that was FDA approved in 2002, and that our therapist have been using since 2004! LASER is incredibly effective at reducing pain, helping with inflammation, and accelerating tissue healing. It is one modality that can shorten healing timelines, and keep you from missing out on activity for prolonged periods of time.
Not only do we do all of those things, we can provide you with invoices that you would submit to the insurance to be reimbursed at the coverage level your plan allows. Which means you may be able to use your insurance, and reap all of the benefits of working with a higher level of care and attention than you may otherwise have been able to if you just went where the insurance, or your doctor sends you.
We’ve also cut out all unnecessary paperwork and never keep anyone waiting. We respect your time, and not waiting is one of the 2 main policies we have. The other is that we will never say “our policy is..” Every time I’ve ever heard those words, they were followed by an excuse as to why I can’t get satisfaction from that business. Instead, we have employed a CSC motto.. meaning Creative Service Care. That means where you may have heard “I’m sorry, there’s nothing I can do for you” from another business, you will hear, “let me see what I can do” and then we will move heaven and Earth to make you happy.
So if you want to see why we’re different, let’s jump on a call and reserve some time before you decide you want to work with us.
Here’s a link to reserve some time to talk.
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