Problem 5 Time Based Billing: Reduced Client Commitment
In the last post we looked at how time based billing model (session to session care) of physiotherapy can potentiate under servicing of a client’s clinical needs. I established that when a client’s clinical needs are not met the likelihood of crossing a Physio Finish Line™ and getting back to one’s physical best is markedly reduced.
Click HERE>> to read more about Problem 4: Under Servicing
The fifth problem associated with session to session time based billing in the physiotherapy industry is the often times reduced client commitment to completing rehabilitation.
Under a session to session treatment and billing model I believe clients have a ‘relative’ handicapped position at the start of their rehabilitation journey. When a client books session to session, there in essence only exists a ‘next session’ commitment to their rehabilitation.
Even if the client is fully committed and onboard with what is required with their rehabilitation the commitment is only as good as the next booked or scheduled session.
I am often heard talking to the POGO clinical team that if a client has engaged us to get them across their Physio Finish Line™ than if they do not have an appointment booked, then there stands little likelihood of an outcome being achieved.
Missing the next appointment
Typically on a time based billing model the client will book session to session. On occasion the client may have several single appointments booked in advance. The vast majority of appointments will however be made one at a time.
The big problem with this approach to rehabilitation is that it is so very easy for the next appointment to be cancelled or missed. The client booking just one appointment in advance is much more at the mercy of life’s unforeseen events conspiring against them crossing their Physio Finish Line™.
Compare the above example to a client’s commitment who is completing a 2, 6, or 12 week Finish Line™ Program with a defined end date, and upfront or part payment plan already made. While a life event may still occur, or even a day to day event, when follow up appointments are pre booked for either hands on treatment or active rehabilitation, if a Finish Line™ Program client misses an appointment (or several) crossing their Finish Line™ is not jeopardised as it would be if they had cancelled their next and only other appointment.
I am often heard coaching the POGO Physio team around the fact that if a client is not in the diary they are not en route to crossing their Physio Finish Line™.
In the event of compassionate circumstances Finish Line™ Program clients can pause their Programs for a designated period of time. That way Finish Line™ Program clients are not disadvantaged in the event of the unforeseen.
A greater investment – a better result
In addition to Finish Line™ Programs mitigating against dropping out of care and not getting the result they desire, when a client commences a Finish Line™ Program and makes an upfront (or part payment) beyond what they would make session to session the ‘buy in’ to getting the result is much greater.
We experience this in life all the time. We treat things that ‘cost us’ more differently. For starters the greater the investment the greater the expected return.
We have found that this positive expectancy of outcome and return on investment has worked favourably for our Finish Line™ Program clients who will make an upfront investment of anywhere from $895 to $3000+ for their unlimited access fixed fee Program.
Compare this to the much lower expectation around attending the ‘next’ session to session consultation whereby the expected return of investment is much lower circa $125. While there is still an expectation around receiving value for the cost of the consultation, the expected return is naturally less.
I personally have enjoyed working with Finish Line™ Program clients who value the investment they have made, and therefore value the work that we do with their rehabilitation.
There exists a level of drive, focus, and commitment that surpasses what can be garnered by the traditional session to session model of physiotherapy service delivery.
Ultimately with our Finish Line™ Programs the client wins with certainty of outcome, cost, and time for rehabilitation. The model lends itself to enhance and not reduce client commitment.
The results speak for themselves-happy clients crossing their physio Finish Line™ and getting back to their physical best.
In the next instalment of this problems of time based billing series I will outline what I believe to be the sixth problem of the traditional model of physiotherapy, the enormous pressure on the physiotherapists delivering the sessions.
For more information around the journey we underwent to launch our Finish Line™ Programs click HERE>> (Challenging the Way the Physiotherapy Industry Charges) to listen to a podcast interview.
For an example of how POGO’s Finish Line™ programs achieve great client outcomes click HERE>> (Finish Line™ Case Study-Tom Bowie) to read Tom’s story of overcoming debilitating lower back and sciatic pain.
In the meantime if you are physiotherapy practice owner looking to get more respected results through heightened trust levels with your clients be sure to subscribe for our POGO Partners™ updates HERE>> POGO Partners™ Program.
If you are a physiotherapy consumer looking to benefit from the best in treatment outcomes schedule your initial appointment (Discover Recover Session) HERE>>.
Physio With a Finish Line™,
Brad Beer (APAM)
Author ‘You CAN Run Pain Free!’
Founder POGO Physio
Host The Physical Performance Show
Featured in the Top 50 Physical Therapy Blog