Personalization aids the chiropractor’s value when utilizing integrated physical medicine with a whole-person viewpoint
As I’ve worked with chiropractors around the United States, one of the ideologies I attempt to assist them with is to stop looking at their patients in a vacuum. It’s straightforward to focus on tension and stiffness in the back and neck area, but something very different occurs when the chiropractor begins to focus myopically on the person with integrated physical medicine.
We live in a world that’s very focused on quickly band-aiding situations and not eradicating the issue. Integrative physical medicine is a holistic approach that helps put the patient at the center of all problems, including physical, emotional, mental, social, spiritual and environmental influences on someone’s life. It’s an intriguing approach to take your practice to the next level by providing comprehensive care to your most important asset— the patient.
Patient stereotyping and vice versa
By nature, many patients stereotype chiropractic. Patients believe that if there is muscle tension or stiffness, they can visit a chiropractor, but if they cannot manage weight or migraines, they visit a general practitioner. This is where chiropractors need to provide value and great messaging to position themselves as holistic healers.
Chiropractors must break the stereotype. As a consultant, I am also a patient, and when I can speak to the doctor about my work environment and what participates in both my motion and my stress, my doctor then views my issue from the entire body.
To exemplify my point, my business environment, especially during COVID-19, has me working with my wife in a small 10×12 environment, enclosed with two desks, chairs, dim lighting, computer equipment, and needless to say, much sitting due in no small measure to teleconference calls. The combination of repetitive sitting with multiple meetings brings emotional and physical strain that aids spinal and neck pain and muscle stiffness in the fingers and arms.
Sitting for long periods disables stretching the legs, hydrating correctly, and even eating. Let’s face it: Many myths prevail on chiropractors, and many rumors include that chiropractors only focus on back issues. However, by providing integrative physical medicine, a chiropractor is best served to understand the complete patient environment. Personalization plays a crucial role in integrative medicine.
A personalized approach to integrated physical medicine
The best part of integrative physical medicine is that chiropractors can provide a personalized approach and perhaps charge more for the services offered. Fees are moot when trying to repair a patient; patients will pay anything as long as they feel youthful, pain-free and healthier.
To exemplify my point, think about an individual who desires to improve their golf game. A good coach does not watch the swing and only repair that. A good coach will look at grips and approach, observe performance in various grasses, and also ask about flexibility, nutrition and even exercise. By thoroughly understanding the client’s composition, the coach might improve the golfer’s game by 10 strokes.
The same principle holds for the chiropractor focusing on integrative medicine because they’re looking at all aspects of that particular person to make them healthier. No two individuals are alike, and personalization aids the chiropractor’s value.
Brain, balance and back
We have all heard about the yin and yang of balancing the body. One of the exciting things about integrative medicine and chiropractic is the capable assumption of balancing the disrupted body from illness and disease.
By focusing on modalities that help regain the body’s natural state of equilibrium, the chiropractor can restore the balance and promote better health. Therefore, rather than just focusing on areas of the back where it connects to bones, the chiropractor is now looking at all functional elements such as organs and even diet to restore the body’s balance.
The notion today is to look at the patient from the perspective of restoring them to better health. One of the problems with prescriptive medicine is the lack of a relationship with the practitioner.
A new focus now exists with the chiropractor to help gain a practitioner-patient relationship that focuses on action plans, attention to restoration, and lifestyle balance. Many individuals today suffer from work-life stress. They suffer from monetary issues and a sedentary lifestyle. The new relationship between chiropractor and patient helps understand the sedentary lifestyle and produce a more action-oriented plan.
The ability to provide an integrative physical medicine program to the patient could include but is not limited to nutritional counseling and blood work that understands potential thyroid or testosterone issues. The blood work might even have conversations about macronutrients, triglycerides, cholesterol and other patient maladies. Additionally, after understanding blood work and nutrition, the chiropractor can then begin to look at items such as exercise, the work environment and even personal relationships.
From this point forward, there is a higher likelihood of success with recommended therapies because of the chiropractor’s ability to participate as a coach, mentor and counselor.
Patient care and experience in integrated physical medicine
In today’s contemporary world, we are witnessing an increasingly symbiotic relationship between patient service and chiropractors. The patient realizes that those doctors who take heed of patient service are more understanding.
Additionally, chiropractors find that when patient service is superb, their advertising costs decrease. This is because excellent patient service helps to develop advocates who continually speak well about your company. When others talk well about you, they will tell the world. This loyalty will create an excellent base who repeatedly returns to buy and tells others about it.
What is required today in most chiropractic practices is the vital need for patient service. You have probably heard much banter about the focus on items such as patient satisfaction, patient service, patient loyalty and even patient-centricity. These are simply words on a piece of paper or in a television advertisement unless someone does something about it. The reason being because marketing and sales are all about relationships.
A new ideology of service
One of the most significant aspects of patient relationship management is simply the ideology of treating patients who become brand loyalists only due to their passion for inti- mate relationships. For example, how many great stories have been heard on the internet, the news or in social media dialogues about organizations such as Starbucks, Zappos, or the Ritz-Carlton? None of these companies would exist without extraordinary customer-centricity.
Integrative physical medicine works well here because it is part of the patient experience. Integrative physical medicine illustrates that you care about the entire person. Integrative medicine demonstrates that you want to create a relationship with the patient, not only focusing on the current issue but eradicating what potentially could be future issues. When we look at how to make chiropractors more lucrative and efficient, and create less work, integrative medicine helps the doctor become a more informed and participative practitioner.
DREW STEVENS, PHD, works with struggling chiropractors and transforms them into wealthy doctors. He is an accomplished author and financial advisor. Contact him at drew-stevens.com. © 2021 Drew Stevens, PhD. All rights reserved.