How’s your Report of Findings (ROF) working for you?
One of the most important visits a patient can make to your office is the report of findings visit. Some practices give a report on the first visit. Most probably give it on the second visit. Some even do it on a third or fourth visit.
A few dislike the term and say they never do it, although I guarantee they give some kind of explanation to the patient of what is wrong and how chiropractic care will fix it.
Most ROF’s are way too complicated, especially the ones devised by various coaching systems.
Why does every consultant teach the KISS principle with patient education, but on the biggest patient education day of care (the ROF!) they advise some complex, multi-step process that even a Rhodes Scholar would have a hard time following.
The simpler you make the ROF, the better it will go for both parties involved. How complex are MD’s when describing a medical procedure? Don’t like the comparison to MD’s? OK, have you ever sat through a complex presentation for getting braces at the orthodontist? The last one I sat in on was about 5 minutes max, then another 5 minutes to work out the finances with the staff.
Buying a house may be the most complex transaction known to man, yet the title company will slide papers under your nose so fast to sign that you’re out of there in 30 minutes. They make it so simple all you do is sign your name a hundred times, go into major debt, and leave very happy!
So in honor of the KISS principle, I’m recommending 7 easy strategies for your report of findings.
1. Be prepared
This one is so easy, but I can’t tell you how many chiros fail at it! I know we all get busy and procrastinate like crazy. I’ve done it too! But nothing can make you, your staff, and our profession look bad if you don’t come in prepared. Do some kind of analysis on your x-rays. Type up a recommended care plan. Think about the questions and objections you might hear from the patient.
2. Write up financials beforehand.
Don’t go into the report with a calculator and try to come up with something on the spot. Have a very neatly prepared financial sheet with all the recommended visits typed out and the cost of each unit beside it. (i.e. 24 adjustments x $55 = 1320.) Do not complicate this sheet. It needs to be something that an 8th grader would understand. Basic math. If your patients are asking a lot of questions about the financial papers, then you’ve made it too confusing.
3. Don’t Be Salesy
Present your findings and let them speak for themselves. Show the degeneration, misalignment, bad posture, etc. Don’t say, “You will die if you don’t get this fixed! Or at the least have cancer in 5 years!” You just turned off everybody but the lonely soul who comes to you just to have someone touch them. Your emphasis needs to be on objective findings.
4. Don’t Give a Dissertation on Chiropractic
You’ve got about 10-15 minutes max to make your point. If you go on and on, people will just start drifting of. Then you are going to have to repeat everything when the financials come up. Just answer their main questions, which are: what’s the problem and how are you going to help fix it. This is no time for a 1 hour history on chiropractic, anatomy, physiology, done pathology, disc herniation rates, or any other class that put you to sleep in school. If they wanted to know all that stuff they would have gone to chiropractic school too.
5.Have Your Staff Present the Financials
One of the best things I learned in practice was letting my CA go in and present the financials. This is so rare outside our profession, that all non-chiros reading this will wonder what I’m talking about. Just tell them what you found, how your going to help fix it, and go through the recommended care plan. Then tell them, “Jane will be right in to go over the finances with you.” Jane comes in with her prepared financial plans, and sits down to explain them.
6. Give Payment Options
Have you heard of “he Expert in our profession? No? He goes by many different names, depending on which consulting group you’re in. I’ve heard many stories about the man, but never actually met him. He’s the chiropractor who personally signs up 100 out of 100 cases on a $3000 prepaid plan. That’s right, not one single patient has ever gone home to think about it in his practice, much less asked for a payment plan. But if you’re just a mortal like me, then I suggest you give 2-3 payment options. Something like a bookkeeping discount, a monthly payment, and some type of financing through a third-party.
7. Track Your Conversion Rate
While this isn’t something you do during your report of findings, it is essential to improving your rates. Each month, total up the number of new patients who started care and divide by the total number of those that showed up for the report. Less than 50% and something is seriously wrong. 60-70% needs improvement. 80-90% and you’re doing great. 100% and you’re the elusive Expert mentioned above that everyone has been dieing to meet (now get a calculator out this time and be honest!)