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Program Development

PRACTICE OPPORTUNITIES

Overview
Improved Clinical Decision-Making
Justification for Services
Increased Referral Base
Competitive Edge

Overview

Developing expertise in a challenging area such as comprehensive services for the treatment of balance disorders presents a variety of opportunities to clinicians and facilities providing these services. An evidence-based approach by a multidisciplinary team to assess and treat balance problems offers a cost-effective alternative to patients, referral sources, and reimbursement agencies, thereby enhancing a balance center's competitive edge within the community.

Today's clinicians are under increasing pressure from insurance companies to provide clinical justification for their services, including clear documentation of assessments, treatment progress and functional outcome. Patients and their families are taking more control of their personal healthcare and expect the highest level of quality and services available. Referring physicians expect answers to define a patient's problem and treatment options clearly. At the same time clinician's are working under tighter budgets, often with fewer staff resources and less treatment time, and are facing further reimbursement restrictions.

The pressures of today's healthcare environment increase the need for objective assessment data and evidence-based patient management strategies. The right technology can have a significant positive impact, both for the health of your patients and the health of your practice. Clear documentation of a patient's impairments and functional limitations obviously aids in treatment planning; but such concise patient data also enhances your reimbursement claims and positions your practice as a clinical resource for referring physicians.

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Justification for Services

The appropriate technology can provide objective criteria to aid in treatment planning and get the patient into the appropriate level of care more quickly, thereby reducing additional expenses due to "doctor shopping" and/or further deterioration due to fear, activity restriction, and deconditioning. This objective allocation of services also helps assure patients and their families that appropriate levels of care are provided and justifies those services to payers. Similarly, referral sources are more likely to be receptive if your program can reference strong evidence for cost-effectiveness, as well as provide data to support recommendations for treatment and to evaluate patient progress. Patients and their families welcome explanations of the program rationale, the required assessment and treatment phases, and planning for evaluation of progress and outcome.

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Increased Referral Base

Your referring physicians are looking for patient management solutions. They want clearly defined answers to their patients' balance problems, as well as clearly defined treatment plans and functional outcomes. Technology provides standardized protocols and objective documentation to help you meet these demands, as well as provides a common language for communicating with other specialists and referring physicians.

The automated documentation obtained through computerized assessments provides concise patient data, in a consistent, quick and efficient manner. Such documentation is of significant value in your own clinical decision-making, as well as that of your referring physicians. The ability to provide objective patient data will help position your balance center as an invaluable resource to your medical community.

The ability to quantify and differentiate underlying sensory and motor impairments has implications for multiple patient populations, and is of significant value to a number of medical specialties. Offering such comprehensive services can attract a broader base of potential referring physicians.

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Competitive Edge

While balance disorders are increasingly prevalent, there is a significant shortage of comprehensive, specialized services available to these patients. By the time most patients find a specialized balance center, they have sought help from several sources, often without finding an effective solution to their problem. Physicians often report difficulty in locating effective services for patients with balance problems. Clinical facilities that are equipped with the appropriate technology and clinical expertise are well positioned competitively to meet these needs and take advantage of the market opportunity.

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