Since their beginning in the Daytona Beach community in 1961, the goal of The Orthopedic Clinic of Daytona Beach (TOC) has been to help patients live their life in full motion through trusted, respectful, and cutting-edge orthopedic care. Daytona Beach is one of the fastest growing communities in the US with its quality of life, great beaches, major sporting and recreational activities, and more. Coupled with TOC’s reputation and reach in the community, the practice has experienced explosive growth which now includes 13 accomplished physicians and 14 mid-level providers across five locations throughout Volusia and Flagler County, Florida. TOC has recently broken ground on a 42,000 square foot medical office building on the same campus as their state-of-the-art surgery center, and they also take all of the orthopedic trauma calls at the community’s only Level II Trauma Center.
Growth also brings challenges. Recruiting and retaining staff continues to be a major issue across healthcare. Further, patients now expect customer service levels to be on par with other industries while also demanding consumer-friendly payment options that meet their individual needs. The TOC “NorthStar” is to provide the utmost respect for patients and the delivery of the highest quality care. This vision led them to seek a solution that would support their office staff with streamlined operations and remove the waste of unnecessary paperwork. This solution would also need to effectively lay the foundation of a price transparency strategy to meet the needs across their spectrum of patients from tourists and students to small business owners and self-insured companies—and everyone in between.
TOC is deeply involved in their community and prides itself on taking care of patients across multiple generations. To further their insights, they engaged in a comprehensive market analysis to get a more detailed understanding of their patients. The study confirmed that patients expect a respectful care experience and expect their surgeons to take a more conservative approach prior to deciding on surgery. TOC discovered that individuals seeking care had financial concerns as the cost of care is rapidly shifting to the patient. To best approach this new paradigm, they launched a strategy to find a trusted industry partner who could provide a solution for price transparency while also providing a secure digital direct pay program tailored for patients who choose to pay for their care directly. Patients benefit from a viable solution through the TOC website without having to wait for a manual calculation of pricing or a call back from staff. Covering office visits, procedures, therapy and imaging studies, the integrated digital marketplace would ease the paperwork burden on staff, meet the needs of their growing patient community, and place TOC well ahead of nationally mandated requirements for price transparency.
Side by side with the HealthMe client support team, TOC was able to deploy the HealthMe price transparency solution in just a few short weeks. They quickly discovered that posting clear prices eliminated confusion about the cost of care; it empowered patients to become more knowledgeable about their treatment options; and patients became more engaged in their care and recovery. Because TOC was able to bundle the cost of evaluations, procedures, and any post operative therapies, patients had peace of mind because they were able to plan their entire journey of care—including payments. Not only did the upfront posting of clear pricing further add to the trust relationship, TOC noticed a significant decrease in “no-show” appointments and was also able to deliver care and receive revenue from a new source: direct pay patients.
Before HealthMe, TOC was doubtful that direct pay patients would be good for their practice. Instead, by deploying a direct pay strategy, leadership noticed a reduction in billing errors as well as a direct increase in a new patient population and associated revenues.
“By developing a price transparency strategy, our goal was to create a better experience for our patients, streamline office workflows, achieve compliance, and increase revenue for our practice. HealthMe was instrumental in our success.” Shannon Stewartson, MHA,FACHE, FACMPE, Chief Executive Officer.