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Thursday, February 26, 2009

In a rough economy, give patients value

In this challenging and down economy where insurance companies and Medicare attempt to remain viable by raising premiums and co-pays, patients may balk at having to come to the office merely to "discuss lab results."  Now I know as well as you do that the cognitive aspects of medicine are important, valuable, and worthy of pay.  Even the insurance companies recognize this fact.  But patients, on the other hand, get pissed off when they are asked to pony up $50 when you don't "do anything."  While I disagree with the patients on this one, I do understand their gripe.  As a result, I try to offer something "of value" to them on every visit.

You may want to try the following: have patients come in to discuss results
  • . . .and have a repeat physical exam.
  • . . .and have a urine culture
  • . . .and have a blood draw
  • . . .and have a ultrasound
  • . . .and review radiologic studies in their presence
  • . . .and draw diagrams for them
  • . . .and complete forms
etc.

Just something I've figured out over the years.