Are You Unsure About Uninsured Patients?
“They’re taking all of our money,” said every doctor ever. No, we’re not talking about banks or operating fees or even *shudder* taxes. We’re talking about insurance. With COVID shutdowns putting the squeeze on practice revenue streams across the world, doctors are becoming more aware of just how big a bite of the increasingly smaller pie insurance companies are taking out of their profit margins. But what can you do? Insurance will do as insurance wills. Well, there’s another way. You could target uninsured patients. Wait! Before you label us completely bonkers, read on to figure out how uninsured patients could be the secret inflow of cash your practice has been looking for.
It’s Hard to Find Insurance Assuring
Ah insurance. The ugly stepchild of the medical industry that all doctors are forced to invite along with them when they hang out with their friends because mom said so.
The unfortunate reality of insurance is that it has a huge impact on purchasing decisions. According to a recent survey, almost one in every four Americans chooses not to get medical care because of the cost. Let’s face it: Medical care is expensive. The human body is a very complex machine, and everything that goes into maintaining it costs way more than a pretty penny. But for people that are struggling to get by, the sad truth is they can’t afford to take care of themselves.
Insurance Companies Use This
If you started reading this article hoping to find a sneaky way to stick it to insurance companies, we’ve got bad news. Unfortunately, you have a better chance of holding them to account as a voter than as a doctor. Insurance companies hold all the cards, so when they say you need to adjust your prices by knocking off almost 80 percent, there’s not much you can do if you’re a private practice. Sure, you could raise prices, but there’s a limit to that. Plus, if you do it too often, insurance can just decide to declare some of the services you provide as non-essential and refuse to cover them. Even worse, they might just decide not to work with you all together.
Optometrists can’t provide life changing services if they aren’t making any money, and they can’t make any money if people can’t afford their services. Insurance companies know this, which is why almost every industry in the medical field has been stuck with a real Monkey’s Paw situation for decades. Yes, you want patients to choose your practice, but are the severe cuts to your profit margins worth it?
Uninsured Patients Are the True Underdog
Okay, we admit it sounds pretty crazy. Trying to persuade people who you know can’t afford your services to come in? Preposterous! And if you think that’s a bit cuckoo, this next part will have you absolutely rolling.
Not only should you target uninsured patients, you should give them a hefty discount too.
In a world dominated by insurance companies seeking to hoover up more and more of your hard earned cash, the way you level the playing field is by cutting out the middleman.
Sure, an uninsured patient may only be paying 40-60% of what you normally charge. But think of it this way: All of that money is now yours. Insurance companies won’t see a single red cent, they can’t tell you how much you’re allowed to have and in most cases, you could still be making more money by providing a heavy discount then you would be if insurance companies got involved and adjusted your prices.
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Contrary to what you might think, this might help your practice as it’s still recovering from the giant COVID-sized hole left in your appointment calendar last year. If insurance is taking more, and you have fewer patients coming through your doors, opening your practice up to the uninsured may just be exactly what you need. Plus, if you ask for cash up front before services, that revenue stream is immediate and reliable. You don’t have to wait for third parties to figure out who pays what or be stuck holding the bag after sudden claim denial for whatever reason.
Making an Attractive Offer
As we mentioned earlier, a significant portion of American adults would rather risk their health and avoid going to the doctor than deal with the high costs of care. Getting these patients to waltz into your practice ready for an eye exam is no small task. You’re going to have to make them an appealing offer.
That’s why we’ve come up with a few ideas your practice can use when targeting the uninsured patient. Use the form above to download your copy of our FREE guide on attracting uninsured patients to your practice!
Need Help Finding Uninsured Patients?
EyeCarePro has 17 years of experience helping practices just like yours get the word out about just about everything. Our veteran optometry marketing experts will work with you to create the perfect program to attract uninsured patients. From fully integrated marketing campaigns, to materials to educate your patients on the benefits of preventative eye care, we work hard to get your name out there so you can focus all of your time on the important things. Call 888.737.5494 and let’s get started today!