A long time ago, if you wanted to watch a movie you either had to go see it at the theater or wait for it to show up on TV. Then came the VCR and you could buy videos to watch at home whenever you wanted. Then came Blockbuster and you no longer had to buy videos, but simply rent them. Consumers saved lots of money. But, Blockbuster got greedy and put all sorts of restrictions and penalties on their customers. And as always happens in a free market, a new competitor showed up.
Netflix offered unlimited rentals through the mail for a low, flat monthly fee. This enabled consumers to order the videos they wanted to watch, when they wanted to watch them without fear of restrictions and penalties. Netflix has improved on the concept and now allows you to simply download a movie on your computer removing another barrier to their customers. Granted, cable companies are now allowing you to watch and pay for movies on demand. BUT, Netflix changed the movie rental market and has almost put Blockbuster out of business.
Health care, especially the chiropractic profession is very similar to the movie rental business. For a long time, insurance would pay for almost any bill a provider submitted. As a result, fees went sky-high and about the only way folks could afford to the chiropractor was if it was covered on their insurance. Even without insurance, doctors created “corrective care plans” based on what was the generally accepted per visit fee based on insurance reimbursement schedules. Needless to say, lots of folks that wanted chiropractic care simply could not afford to go.
Innovation in health care, especially chiropractic, is the concept of unlimited care at a fixed fee. Because the greatest benefit of chiropractic care is long-term health and wellness, a fixed number of visits over a limited period of time was limited for both the consumer and the provider. Unlimited care allows you to get adjusted as often as you need while KNOWING what the cost will be. And because of the fixed fee, you can include the care as part of your lifestyle without regard to uncertainties in health care and insurance.
Unlimited care programs also work for the provider/chiropractor. Without having to hassle with insurance companies and an overhead to justify the expense, chiropractors are able to cut their overhead. Also, the lower fee allows them to see more people with less hassle. This makes the chiropractor more efficient and more effective. It actually allows more people to get care in a simple, affordable fashion. And as people realize the great benefits of regular chiropractic care, the greater demand for simple, effective chiropractic care grows.
I urge chiropractors to consider this business model and consumers who want true health to find chiropractors that use this model. It’s probably the best way I know to make sure that you’ll find a good chiropractor that does JUST what a chiropractor does.