Academy of Chiropractic Personal Injury & Primary Spine Care Program
Quickie Consult 254
"Double Your Volume"
Yesterday's recurring theme from coast-to-coast was patient education or lack thereof. There seems to be a resistance to educating patients on their prescribed treatment plan, what your goals are and chiropractic in general. In speaking to many doctors yesterday, I am convinced that it is not laziness, although that is always a nagging question. I believe it is lack of organization, vision and belief in what you, I and we do collectively as healers. There is no explanation other than laziness, but again, I do not believe that is the issue.
Each of the 4 doctors I spoke with have a PVA between 10-15 and my statement to these doctors was the following:"An Advil will do a better job than you at the moment. With 10-12 visits you are barely getting them out of pain and are making no structural corrections. The underlying problems will persist due to the lack of structural corrections. Therefore, an Advil will get them out of pain faster, cheaper and will also make no underlying structural corrections, just like you are not doing."
That was my comment almost verbatim and I could hear the doctor say under their breath, "Asshole." However, I also believe the endearment was directed inwardly towards themselves and not at me. Each of the doctors I spoke with understands chiropractic and realizes that the answer is not getting more new patients as their offices are akin to "hampsters on wheels." In the unlikely event that they drop only a few new patients for 1 month, they stand the chance of going bankrupt. All they need to do to double their practice is to double their PVA and that is solely a function of patient education and belief in what we do.
I directed them to re-read consultations #19 through #22 and call me within 24 hours of reading them. I will also speak to them daily for the next 2 weeks to ensure that they get their infrastructures set correctly and efficiently. None of this take lots of $$$. All it takes is focus and the willingness to succeed vs. complain about why everyone else is successful. (None of these doctors complained, but most others do.)
Recall Quickie Consult #248 titled, "Are You the EASY BUTTON?" Educating the patient and having him/her follow his/her care plan is critical to the lawyer. If a patient does not follow his/her prescribed plan, the courts consider that a reason for not having a serious injury and can be the single reason for a lawyer not prevailing in his/her case.
You win through clinical excellence and patient education in the chiropractic - physical medicine - rehabilitation genres is central to the success of the patient getting well. When working in the medical-legal arena, a well-educated patient will communicate his/her satisfaction with your care to the lawyer because he/she "gets it." If he/she does not "get it," he/she will also communicate that with the lawyer, I promise you!
Once your patient goes beyond "pain care" and enters rehabilitation care, he/she will start to function better simply as a result of the power of the chiropractic adjustment. I know because that is what patients have told me for over 30 years and your patients will too. I have also had direct feedback from most of the lawyers I have worked with over the years who have expressed their appreciation for the extra time I have taken to educate my patients to ensure they have followed their treatment plans. Patient education will go a long way towards your future relationships with the lawyers of those happy, happy patients and lead to doubling your PVA and resultant volume!
P.S. My PVA was 113 for the bulk of my career. I never stopped educating. My patients had 3 choices: pain care, reconstructive care or wellness care. No matter what they chose, I kept educating them until they realized the power of chiropractic and after their accident benefits or managed care benefits ended, they stayed under care to stay well. My practice had little financial stress and if I had a poor month for new patients, it really didn't matter.