Change Makers

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Work toward creating a healthier society by promoting wellness.

By Jean Darling, PT, LAT

As changes take place in the health care system, the science of medicine and the art of healing continue to strike a balance. Our profession needs to participate by taking on the role of wellness professionals. We must be innovative in our approach to wellness as we position ourselves for the future of health care. We have all the tools necessary to succeed, and we need to practice them by being the conductors of healthy lifestyles in our communities.

At the World Economic Forum this year, the focus was on a new and rather upbeat topic: the need for countries to invest in health to achieve long-term economic growth. “The time is right to elevate the conversation on health,” said Robert Greenhill, the managing director and chief business office of the forum. “This year, there is a sense that the global economy is out of intensive care and embarking on rehabilitation. As we ask how, metaphorically, to improve the economy’s health, literally improving the population’s health is a good place to start.”

Aging Population

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Creating and growing a successful geriatric physical therapy practice.

By Mike Studer, PT, MHS, NCS, CEEAA, CWT, CSST

The decision to open a physical therapy practice with a primary focus on geriatrics cannot be made based only on market research, brainstorming, or simply to replicate another successful niche practice model. A geriatric practice that is created and successfully grown is built on a combination of practical knowledge and focus.

Geriatric rehabilitation requires patience and know-how that are somewhat different than what is required of other outpatient physical therapy practices. Helping someone who is elderly and debilitated stick with what can be a long process of functional rehabilitation takes a great deal of clinical and motivational skill. It also requires a different perspective and knowledge of the business of outpatient rehabilitation.

Finding Balance in the Books

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Evaluating and updating physical therapy billing practices can increase profits.

By Janet M. Shelley, PT, DPT

These are tough financial times for physical therapy practices. In addition to declining reimbursement, therapists deal with a mountain of paperwork and regulatory requirements to get paid. Evaluating your processes and changing to some best billing practices today can produce increased profits for a clinic. Here is what you need to consider:

  • Eligibility: Ineligible patient insurance coverage is the most common cause of claim rejections and denials by payers. Patient submission of an insurance card at the front desk does not ensure that your physical therapy services will be covered under the plan. Benefits should be checked prior to delivering care with an emphasis on what portion the patient is responsible to pay. Benefits can be verified via the phone number on the patient’s insurance card, through the individual insurer’s website, or for the most time-efficient method, through automated eligibility subscriptions. Additionally, verifying Medicare status has risen in importance so there is an understanding of how many dollars have been applied to the therapy cap and if the patient has regular Medicare or a Medicare Replacement Plan.
    Best Billing Practice: Purchase an online eligibility verification subscription that will verify coverage and estimate patient payment responsibility in real-time format for multiple payers.

Be Everywhere

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Use client-focused marketing to increase leads.

By Jena H. Castro-Casbon, MS, CCC-SLP

Where You Are vs. Where You Want to Be
Inevitably, every December and January there is much talk of New Year’s resolutions. Whether they motivate you or make you cringe, starting each year by analyzing where you are and where you want to be in your private practice is very important. Chances are, no matter how successful your private practice is, you still have goals to increase income, productivity, and overall success.

If your main goals surround increasing income, you are going to have to tap into additional referral sources to grow your caseload. Although finding new clients is not easy, I urge you to dedicate your 2015 marketing efforts to being everywhere. Before we learn how to have a “be everywhere” mentality, we need to make sure that your future clients know why they should hire you.

During MLB Playoffs, Networks Encourage Fans to Watch Their Competitors

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By Associated Press | Reviewed by Sturdy McKee, PT

Who is your Competition? According to Inc. Magazine, some networks do not see other networks as competitors during the Major League Baseball (MLB) playoffs. They, instead, hope that promoting the sport and the playoffs will help to build interest in the league and that will, in turn, benefit all of the networks that broadcast that sport. They emphasize that the audience is highly targeted and not loyal to a network but rather loyal to the sport and the league.

Major League Baseball has contracts with Fox Sports and TBS. During the American League Championship Series and National League Championship Series each was promoting the other to enhance the appeal and viewership of MLB in general.

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