With potential whistle-blowers masquerading as patients in your waiting room and the OIG sniffing around for potential red flags in order to launch an audit, it’s easy to conclude that offering discounts for chiropractic services is not just ill advised, but outright illegal.
Nothing could be further from the truth. What’s key here, however, is how you set your discount policies up. Helping patients afford wellness care is the compassionate and right thing to do. But doing it the wrong way can cost you-and cost you big. The chiropractic industry is still abuzz over the DC who ran afoul of the OIG to the tune of over $700,000. We aren’t talking a wrist slap.
No, you don’t want to offer illegal inducements (“Come in for a free exam complete with x-rays for ONE DOLLAR!”), time-of-service discounts in excess of what might be considered “reasonable”. What is reasonable? Think defensible, what is the actual bookkeeping savings and you are on the right track. We suggest following the broad guidance of the OIG. In a recent opinion, they O.K.’d a 5%-15% “Prompt Payment” discount for a particular hospital.
So what can you do? Simple. Join ChiroHealthUSA, a provider network that works in conjunction with a Discount Medical Plan. Our network of over 2,900 healthcare professionals have helped over 295,000 patients get the care they need at a fee they can afford. More importantly, they are practicing with more peace of mind!
The cost to your practice? Absolutely nothing. And you still get to set your fee yourself. All you need to do is offer your under-insured, partially insured, or those few stragglers who even after the Affordable Care Act remain uninsured membership with ChiroHealthUSA. It costs your patients a mere $49 for their entire family per year. And just like that, you have a safe, sane, legal way to give those patients discounted fee that allows them to get the care they need and want at a cost they can handle.
I don’t have to tell you that as the benefits for chiropractic care dwindle, more and more patients find themselves being forced to choose between chiropractic care and other necessities-and chiropractic care doesn’t always win out. Medicare patients, especially, are getting the short end of the stick, since Medicare will only pay for acute, not maintenance, care.
ChiroHealthUSA gives you a legal way to have the practice you always wanted to have, and give your patients the care they deserve. We offer a free webinar every Tuesday. To register, click here.
This content is by Dr. Ray Foxworth. To read more about Dr. Foxworth, click here. You should seek expert counsel in evaluating opinions, treatments, products and services. For more info see ourEditorial Policies.