Personal Training - How to Increase Your Earnings Within the Medical Profession

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Personal Training - How to Increase Your Earnings Within the Medical Profession

Post  Fitness Scientist on Fri May 28, 2010 1:25 pm

Personal Training

Overview and Recommendations
How to Increase Your Earnings


The information provided in this article may at first, seem complex or contradictory, OR incredibly simple and naive. It isn't. It's just that the medical industry, insurer's, billing procedures and licensing laws are full of contradictions.

It is very difficult to be specific since, each of those mentioned, are always in a state of flux; one cannot get a straight answer, from two people in the same organization. Especially now, given the potential changes in health insurance.

Let me state up front, I wrote this article about 30 years ago. It was based on my years of owning a number of fitness centers in which I offered the services of bodybuilding, total conditioning, physical therapy, back-to-work conditioning and enhanced sports conditioning.

Let me say up-front, that it was clear to me at that time, and is still clear to me that the typical Personal Trainer has more knowledge about how to construct a great fitness program, than does the typical physical therapist graduating from a typical college level course related the physical therapy.

I said this publically many years ago and the amount of letters and phone calls from those in the medical industry was as if I had condemned The Source himself. The ranting and raving was incredible. I suspect the same may be true in this day and age.

Back in the good old days of the Iron Age, many of us had no college degrees, all we had was a vast amount knowledge and experience and the goal of helping people increase their health and fitness, or perhaps to become a respected bodybuilder, or a competitive Olympic Lifter.

I learned back then that a typical college level curriculum could be a waste of time. So, I decided that I did not want a "college degree." Instead, all I wanted to learn was to be able to understand anatomy, physiology, exercise science, and physics. That is exactly what I did. That approach opened many doors for me in life. Although I took the road less traveled it became a super highway.

So, to those of you who have no "credentials" and no "sheep-skins" I tell you this: all that is important in life (in a Personal Training sense)is to have the fire-in-you-belly which allows you to become a person whose intent is to help man-kind succeed in life by learning the value of intelligent exercise and passing it on. The stronger one becomes physically, the stronger one becomes mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

The basic premise of this article is to let you know that it is possible as anyone with an interest in helping people improve their physical lot in life is that it would be smart to think about combining fitness with physical therapy services. Last I checked, almost anyone can own a therapy center -- the word own is the important word. Then all one needs to do is to hire a Licensed Therapist, provide honest services, at an honest prince, and stay on the high ground.

It's easy to understand why the consumer is in a revolutionary state of mind. The medical industry and the insurer's have, in one way or another, been pushing the consumer around for years. When and if, a form of National Health Insurance is acted into law and is accepted, is anyone's guess. One thing is certain, many insurance organizations, are getting their ducks in a row.

The horror stories, presented by policy holders against insurer's, would fill an encyclopedia. The bungling of the medical industry also has its place in the Bungling Hall of Fame. The net result: the times, they are a changing.

Surely, by the time you decide to enter the therapy market, things will be simpler, information regarding billing and prices, will be easier to decipher and the medical industry will have softened its "Holier than thou attitude."

This can only work to everyone's advantage.

For you, it will open up the financial opportunities and lead to faster payment from insurer's, for services rendered. The changes will lead to billing by electronic means, rather than the paperwork jungle, as in the past.

The enormous amounts of reports, diagrams, assessments, and justifications, will be whittled from hundreds to a few. The medical industry will be opened to anyone with the knowledge and experience to provide maximum results in minimum time.

So, hang in there and believe in yourself. Make the transition into the medical industry. The fitness industry is overall at a dead end. The glory days of the 1970's and 1980's are over. It's time to move on to bigger things and to receive more income based on your investment, knowledge and experience.

In summary, here's how to attack the therapy marketplace.

1. Be secure in your knowledge and experience. You are as capable of providing therapy services, as any physical therapist. Yes, you may end up hiring a therapist to work for you, just to have a licensed person on premises, but, succeeding in physical therapy is, much easier than succeeding in the fitness business. The difference between minimum earnings and high income, is connected to your real earning ability, is to tie into the medical industry.

2. Check all licensing laws pertaining to physical therapy services. Conform to the law, don't bend the rules.

3. Once you understand the laws, align yourself with the proper medical people, to bill insurer's for your services. In the unwritten pecking order, physician's (all but Chiropractor's) get paid fastest, then, physical therapist's and chiropractor's get paid. Technically, chiropractor's are physicians and should be allowed the same privileges as other physician's; however, that is not presently the case, sad but true.

So, if you have a choice of aligning with a medical person, a physician is the first choice, physical therapist and chiropractor's next. We have billed, using a physical therapist's license, and monitored the time it takes for getting paid our fees.

Then, we billed, using a physician's license, yes I was once married to a physician. The therapist fees were paid in a time of anywhere from 30 to 90 days. Having a physician on staff, and billing under that license, payments began within 2 weeks. Isn't that interesting?

There are unwritten understandings, between the insurer's and various medical professionals. We recommend that you attempt to affiliate with a physician, if possible.

Entering the physical therapy marketplace is as simple as this: (a) check the licensing laws in your state and comply with them.

This may mean you'll need to hire a physical therapist, occupational therapist, etc.

If so, many states have an unlicensed position -- "Medical Assistant," that means: you could be a legal medical assistant, providing therapy services, under the "supervision" of a licensed therapist. It may be that one physical therapist is authorized to supervise several medical assistant's

The amount of money you'd have to pay a therapist is minuscule, compared to the amount of money you could bill, under the therapist's license.

Having a medical person on staff opens the doors to the insurer world. Rather that processing all the insurance paper-work in-house, hire a local insurance billing company to process the paperwork and handle all the follow-up telephone calls, needed to keep the insurer's on their toes, regarding your payment owed to your company.

Then, with a medical person and billing company on board, you follow standard management and marketing techniques to build the business. Frankly, that's all there is to it in a legal sense. Naturally, you'd have to design a logical proactive therapy program.

Also, we are presupposing you know that, building the business means: proper marketing and management procedures, referrals, connections, etc.

Inside the Referral System

More than the fitness business, the medical referral business is mired in smoke and mirrors. Many physicians, specially orthopedic physicians, have connections with established therapy facilities.

Many times, they are silent partners, at other times, there are some kind of, shall we say: "arrangement," which benefits the referring physician. As the saying goes, "You can't tell the player's without a scorecard."

If you have connections with various physician's, insurer's, hospital's, lawyer's, medical evaluator's and the like, it is easier to establish yourself, as a person contributing to the functional improvement of inured people.

If not, it will take a while to sort out the puzzle and build a referral base.

Once your gluteus maximus is covered in a licensing sense, all you need do is stick to quality business practices.

Prices

(Keep in mind this article was written in the late 1980's)

Design and market a protocol as a "short term" program. As an example, 6 weeks sounds realistic to consumer's and insurer's.

It gives them the hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. If, at the end of 6weeks, the patient has not satisfactorily improved, a simple phone call to the insurance adjuster, will usually grant an extension on the services to be provided.

A program that is 12 weeks or longer in scope, seems like a long time to both consumer's and insurer's.

True, longer programs have been the norm, but given the pending changes in health insurance, etc., a short term program will sell better.


Create a Separate Image

It is a great idea, to conjure up a name and marketing image for your therapy program, that is different from your fitness image. As an example, we used the name "Health Back," for our back program. The wording is short and sweet and says to the consumer, exactly what the nature of the program is. We recommend you do the same, create a name that has a medical image to it. That means using a different name, logo, letterhead, business cards, etc.

Indoctrination, Supervision, Education and Motivation

Education, supervision and motivation are the base of a successful fitness, or therapy business. In the beginning of a therapy program, the time spent Educating is repaid many times over.

Supervision meaning: one to one focus on the individual client. It makes a client feel special and he or she will believe that you have their future improvement as your goal. Which you should!

Motivation is the factor, combined with the first two mentioned, that keeps a person coming back for more. Many times, it can take the form of a kind word or a pat on the back. Do whatever it takes(legally) to make a person feel valuable. If you do, you will win a friend forever.

Having literally, supervised over a million workouts, we understand how boring it may become, attempting to educate supervise and motivate people.

Yet, as educator's, we do owe the consumer our best effort. When it becomes boring for you, that's the time to hire an assistant, A "helper" type person. Then, you become the "Director," and design and supervise all programs, while others perform the day to day tasks

Do Not Offer Any Deals

The fitness business is different, in an image sense, from the therapy business. Don't market a cut-rate therapy image.

You are aware of the negative effects, the cut-rate, wheel and deal mentality, has had on the fitness business. Don't carry that approach into the medical industry. It will backfire.

No deals, no time, for no body. You are entitled to the same compensation as other medical professionals. Think big and think positive. You are what you think you are!

Keep Accurate Records

Paperwork is the fuel that presently drives the medical industry. Soon, the paperwork jungle will be replaced, completely by electronic billing. Until then, keep accurate records of all evaluations, workouts, discussions, and billing. Just in case someone has questions regarding these business problems.

The Market

The connections between physical and mental fitness, prevention and rehabilitation of injuries and work capacity are well established.

Historically, physical therapy and rehabilitation centers have treated, then discharged clients, when therapy is completed. The business result is: future income, business growth and expansion are limited and the client may become re-injured.

Many rehab clients, are referred to a typical fitness center, since many physicians, and others, cannot handle on site rehab and fitness training. Fitness centers are able to enter the physical therapy market, offer initial therapy treatment and, to insure life long health and fitness services. Thereby continuing health and fitness services, after the initial rehabilitation is complete.

Presently, segments of the medical profession are realizing the lucrative potential of the rehab\fitness marketplace. Some have taken advantage of it. Most have not. Those entering the marketplace are saddled with excess square footage costs, over staffing, exorbitant equipment costs, duplication of effort and time mismanagement.

All of which lead to high operating costs; which in turn, demand greater patient volume; which in turn leads to staff burn out and lack of consumer confidence. The "bedside manner" of many medical professionals, is not at the high caliber it once was and, the consumer are fed up with this impersonal approach, dominating the medical industry.

A market exists therefore, for a focused, personal approach to rehabilitation and wellness.This is where a Fitness Therapy Instructor fits in. Also, a market exists for in home rehabilitation and fitness training. Many insurance companies, will pay for in home purchase and use of rehab equipment. This is another area an instructor can tap into by selling a product.

The Fitness Therapy (a name I began using years ago) approach, as well as the in home market is far reaching and includes not only therapy treatment, but also: equipment sales and a self-education approach, through newsletters, books and audio and video cassettes.

A Fitness Therapy approach can help the health and fitness needs of the consumer, improves your income and provides a stable future for you and your family.

May the Source be with you!

Joe Mullen
Fitness [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Fitness Scientist

Posts : 57
Join date : 2010-04-26
Age : 80
Location : Lake Mary, Florida

http://joemullenfitness.com . . . . . .www.bodbuildinghighintens

Back to top Go down

Re: Personal Training - How to Increase Your Earnings Within the Medical Profession

Post  AceHIT on Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:18 am

Thank you very much for this.

All your articles deserve to be written in gold. What a great privilege it is to have you posting on this site.

Thanks again

AceHIT

Posts : 31
Join date : 2010-04-15

Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum