Many chiropractors have realized the benefits of offering products for sale to our patients. Whether it’s the convenience factor for the patient, our ability to control quality or brand use, or the fact that we want to be able to help our patient’s outcomes, products make sense.
Unfortunately, some chiropractors have a difficulty in making the sale of products make financial sense.
Worse, if you are the type of DC to stock your office with every “hot” new product that catches your fancy, only to quickly lose interest in it a few weeks later, product inventory and sales can become a financial drain on your profitability.
Furthermore, some chiropractors to fail to tap into the full potential of product sales, particularly those that fall into the category of Durable Medical Equipment (DME).
While most insurance companies do not provide coverage for patients to purchase nutritional supplies, analgesic gels and other OTC topicals, many insurance companies do reimburse DME. In other words, that cervical pillow or that lumbar back brace you just sold your patient may have been covered by their insurance benefits, if you correctly billed for this supply.
If this is old news to you, that’s a good thing! If not, you should begin checking out your patient’s DME benefits when verifying their coverage to see if their insurance covers such items. A quick glance through ChiroCode or other coding resources will give you some common HCPCS codes used for such supplies. Note: the bed of nails is not a recommended supply or product and does not have a HCPCS code 🙂
Finally, some of you who have been doing this a while may have noticed an “extra” hoop lately that insurance companies are requiring before processing payment. In other words, your claims may be rejected or delayed due to missing modifiers in connecting with your billed HCPCS code.
If this happens to you, the three basic modifiers most insurance companies are looking for are as follows:
- RR Rental
- NU Purchase of new equipment
- UE Purchase of used equipment
In most cases, chiropractors will sell their patients a new product, in which the appropriate modifier attached to that product’s HCPCS code would be –NU. But, if you rent or sell used equipment, you should report the –RR or –UE modifiers, respectively.
From the email inquiries I have been getting about how to get paid for DME, this should clear up the basic problems I see many chiropractors facing. If you want the “advanced” course, you will have to check out one of my seminars this fall – the new schedule and full details are coming soon!