Your Patient Doesn’t Qualify For Your Primary Lender. What’s Next?
When looking around the patient finance industry, it’s hard to figure out a good course of action that works well for all of your patients. The questions you are faced with look something like this:
- What does it cost me to offer financing options to my patients?
- What does it cost the patient?
- What happens when patients don’t have great credit and get turned down?
- How can I design a program that is good for ALL of my patients so I don’t have to decline them?
If you have asked yourself or had someone else ask you any or all the above questions, keep reading. Not all patient finance programs are built the same way. Most of you know about finance offerings from the major providers that offer 0% promotional interest for a specified period, or extended payment plans with rates ranging from 9%- 16.95%, all with very affordable payments for the patient. The fees you pay for offering financing range from 0% to as high as 35%. You are typically funded within 24 hours and these programs work well. In fact, we encourage you to keep using them as your primary lenders. There is a lot of value in getting paid up front, so why not.
Primary Lenders Perfect Partner
We hope you begin to look at patient finance as a sales tool that helps you serve more patients. So, designing a plan that creates value for the practice and serves the patient is critical. Begin to think of your marketing costs and how much you spend getting the patient in the door for that initial consultation. Should the patient want your services and not qualify for your primary finance offering, what do you do with them? Do they walk out your door not getting treated? Are you losing the opportunity? A mentor of mine once told me that opportunities are never lost, someone else just takes the ones you miss.
The large national medical practices recognize this and it is a key part of their growth strategy. In fact, it is why we work with many of them. If you can provide services to a patient who was turned down for your primary finance offering, what would that look like?
We believe it looks something like this:
- Do a credit evaluation via a soft credit pull (you don’t want to harm the patient’s credit)
- Require a down payment from the patient commensurate with their likelihood of paying over time, this mitigates the risk in the financing of some patients
- Have the patient sign an agreement that incorporates the Truth in Lending Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, and other state and federal required lending clauses
- Outsource the servicing of the monthly payment to experts
- Incorporate a patient friendly collection process that offers options for patients when they are in financial distress
Healthcare Finance Direct has been offering healthcare financing for over 8 years to over 2,400 providers across the nation. If you would like to know more about patient financing and how Healthcare Finance Direct could impact your practice, feel free to contact us or follow one of the links below.