‘If you’re not doing an advanced modality and want to survive the economics of today’s chiropractic care, consider targeting high average patient visits while still delivering quality service’
Chiropractors in the U.S. reported their average patient visits per week jumping more than 15%, from 142 to 168, in the latest Chiropractic Economics Salary & Expense Survey, measuring the pandemic months from April 2020 to April 2021.
Chiropractors over the last year have reported a surge of back and neck injuries from people adapting to working from home.
The 2021 Chiropractic Economics Salary & Expense Survey will be released in mid-May of this year, but survey respondents and chiropractors who subscribe or re-subscribe for free (click here) to Chiropractic Economics will receive the survey results at the end of April, two weeks before it is released in print.
David Singer, DC, founder of David Singer Enterprises, says having a high-volume practice with high average patient visits is particularly attractive as insurance continues to play a smaller role in chiropractic care reimbursement.
“More and more providers are moving toward a cash-based practice, and chiropractors have two options — they can sell high-ticket cash plans or they can do high-volume moderate fee schedules,” he writes for Chiropractic Economics. “The latter is the only way you can really continue to grow. You can develop a personal injury practice, but you have to be lucky enough to be in a state that still has good insurance for chiropractic care.”
If chiropractors practice in states where patients have $3,000 deductibles or higher, many are forced toward a cash practice model, where they target high average patient visits at an attractive price.
“You can provide a specialty such as neurology, which charges more per visit, but if you’re not doing an advanced modality and want to survive the economics of today’s chiropractic care, consider targeting high average patient visits while still delivering quality service,” he says, adding that high volume is not synonymous with poor quality.
Brent Detelich, DC, co-founder of Physicians Business Solutions, says the power of community is critical to building a successful high-volume practice.
“First and foremost, I always wanted to help as many people as possible,” he writes. “A chiropractor who likes to have multiple and frequent new-patient events — lectures, screenings, and more — will build a stellar reputation. When I started in 1993, it took me two years to get to 200 visits per week, then I started community events and that resulted in 550 visits per week. Within six months, I had five clinics doing 2,000 visits.”
From the 2021 survey, pandemic conditions also saw solo chiropractic practitioners increase roughly 6% to 63%, group practitioners/partners and associates down slightly, franchise owners increasing to 1%, and urban practitioners up roughly 3% to 30% while suburban and rural practitioners were down slightly, as reported by U.S. chiropractors.
The 2021 Chiropractic Economics Salary & Expense Survey is the go-to source for annual salary data and trending information in the chiropractic industry.
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