What Chiropractors Should Know About Cost Conversations

Chiropractic treatment is often a more cost-effective method of pain management and treatment of non-acute injuries. But, it can still be expensive for people on a tight budget with little disposable income.

This might make speaking to your patients about the cost of chiropractic care seem tricky. Even for experienced chiropractors, the question of how your patient will pay for treatment costs can often be uncomfortable. But it’s a necessary part of running your practice, and the more up-front and transparent you are about pricing, the more your patients will appreciate it.

Many of us grew up being taught that discussing money isn’t polite. You didn’t talk about how much someone makes, what they paid for their home, car or even their shoes. And you certainly didn’t speak about how much a medical procedure or treatment costs.

Fortunately, times have changed. Thanks to social media and the influence of a less-stuffy generation of millennials, it is now not only OK, but pretty much expected, to share almost everything — not only with family and close friends, but with anyone who cares to read about it on Facebook, Twitter or a review site like Yelp.

Along with the open nature of social sharing comes the ability to more easily speak with your chiropractic patients about the cost of their treatments.

The ability to have informative, comfortable conversations about cost, and how to pay for treatment is a necessary part of your business. It’s also a much-appreciated service for your patients. Here’s why:

  • Like you (before you read this blog), patients may not know how to comfortably bring up cost. They may feel reluctant to talk about how to afford a recommended treatment plan.
  • Your patients will be relieved and happy that you’re tackling what can sometimes be perceived as the ‘elephant in the room.’
  • It provides patients an easy way to ask questions about now much and when they’ll need to pay, and the recommended treatments themselves.
  • It allows you to sense whether your patient will stick with the treatments you’ve prescribed. If they indicate they just can’t afford the best approach to treatment, you can then discuss the impact of choosing a less effective alternative — or not following through with treatment at all.

If a patient is not concerned about cost and how to pay, they’ll still appreciate the clear, up-front information. No one likes feeling in the dark about how much something costs.

Use these tips for helpful, easy treatment cost conversations with your patients:

  • Be concise, but don’t rush. Give the information needed for a patient to anticipate necessary future payments, then allow a few minutes for questions.
  • Don’t be in “sales mode.” A cost and payment conversation is not about selling.
  • Offer options like a discount for cash payments or patient financing through LendingUSA. If you sense that treatment cost is a hurdle for your patient, be as flexible and creative as possible.
  • If you don’t already, try bundling a set of treatments at a discounted rate. Educate them as to how the reduced cost per treatment will save them money.
  • If a patient is firm that they cannot pay for the number or type of treatments you are suggesting, give them an alternative while letting them know of the potential for a lesser outcome.
  • Be friendly and confident. If you’re at ease, your patient will be too.

Bottom line: Your patients come to you to feel good and manage their pain. Discussing treatment costs with a patient doesn’t have to be painful — for them or for you.

If you’re looking for financing for chiropractic patients, we can help!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Is chiropractic treatment expensive?

Chiropractic treatment is often considered a cost-effective method for managing pain and addressing non-acute injuries. However, the perceived expense may vary depending on an individual’s budget and disposable income.

2. Why discuss cost with patients?

Open discussions about the cost of chiropractic services help ensure transparency and enable patients to make informed decisions about their healthcare. It fosters a positive patient-provider relationship and avoids any surprises related to expenses.

3. How do I approach the cost conversation with a patient?

Approach the cost conversation with transparency and patience. Provide clear, up-front information about expected payments, explain the cost breakdown, and be ready to discuss payment options. Allow time for questions to ensure the patient fully understands.

4. Should I try to sell my services during a cost conversation?

No, a cost conversation is not the time for sales tactics. Focus on transparency and honesty, providing the patient with accurate information about the real cost of services and available payment options.

5. What payment options can I offer to patients?

Consider offering payment options such as discounts for cash payments or patient financing through LendingUSA. Providing flexible and creative payment solutions can alleviate financial concerns and make the treatment more accessible.

6. Is bundling treatments at a discounted rate a good idea?

Yes, bundling treatments at a discounted rate can be a cost-effective option for patients seeking long-term care. Educate patients on the reduced cost per treatment and emphasize the long-term benefits of returning for ongoing care.

7. How should I handle a patient who cannot afford recommended treatments?

If a patient expresses financial constraints, provide alternative solutions and recommendations. Be honest about potential outcomes with reduced treatment and maintain a compassionate approach. This builds trust and may lead to future engagements when their financial situation improves.

8. Why is being friendly and confident important in these conversations?

Being friendly and confident creates a positive and comfortable atmosphere for the patient. It instills trust and can result in positive word-of-mouth referrals. Confidence in the value of your services, coupled with compassion, enhances the overall patient experience.

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