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Need advice on new aids

HearWHAC hearwhac at netins.net
Thu Feb 1 00:19:16 EST 1996

chfseat at aol.com says...
>Actually, it probably needs to be discussed, There is a current debate
>between our audiology dept. and our billing dept.  should there be charges
>for follow-up visits past one or two visits ???  The current reimbursement
>structure dictates that we often receive the invoice price for the hearing
>aid plus a $200 dispensing fee. This is a marginal profit margin for time
>spent.   It would it be feasible to charge differently ??? From an AR
>standpoint, followup visits are most important, but isnt our time worth
>somehting, and AR worth being reimbursed ??? The debate goes on... has
>anyone tried other billing strategies ???

I tried unbundling pricing 25 years ago (for three years) but will never do 
it again. It discourages people from getting necessary services and help 
with their hearing aids. Insurance companies usually don't pay for ongoing 
service and people will go without before they will pay for it. $100/hour is 
reasonable if you can get anyone to pop for it. When you add the rent, 
utilities, secretary, phone, supplies, postage, bookkeeper, expensive office 
equipment & computers, expensive audiology equipment and computers, time you 
are not seeing patients so you can answer mail, filling out forms, taking 
vacations or attending continuing ed courses, bad debts when people don't 
pay you what they owe you, and all the other stuff, there is not a lot left 
over to pay you... Most of the people I see have small monthly incomes, but 
they do have considerable savings in the bank - so they would rather pay for 
everything at the time they get the hearing aid and not have to mess around 
later! That way I don't have guilt when I have them come back as often as 
necessary to make them into hearing aid "users" and not just hearing aid 

And with the advent of the AuD with its improvement in standards and 
emphasis on science which I see as important progress that needs to be made, 
the doctor's (AuD) salary is going to have to increase or else you aren't 
going to be able to recruit anyone to become an AuD!

Paul Woodard :-)
Des Moines IA USA

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