Home health physical therapy relies on physical therapists who typically work under a staffing agency or contracted facility to deliver care to patients in their homes on an assignment-by-assignment basis. For some, home health is less stressful than working in a clinic due to the business’s pace and one-on-one nature. Home health offers schedule flexibility which is an excellent relief from the grind of a typical clinic. Schedule flexibility is not typically an option when working at a clinic or hospital.
Factors such as location and pay type affect the amount of money you take home. Pay types include per hour or visit. As you research the home health industry, it is vital that you understand the pros and cons of reimbursement types.
Is it Better to Be Reimbursed Per Hour or Per Visit?
Pay Per Visit and Hourly Compensation
Some home health care companies prefer to pay physical therapists a certain amount for each visit they complete instead of paying an hourly wage. If the census or the patient population is robust in the territory you work in, it might be possible to earn more working pay per visit. However, if you work in a rural area and have difficulty reaching many people due to distance or time, you might be better off with an hourly wage.
It is vital that you realize that your physical therapy responsibilities do not end after a therapy session. There is documentation, contacting physicians after the visit with the patient and scheduling. These responsibilities mean that you will still be working between your visits and after treating a patient.
Some home health companies pay an hourly rate. The good news is that you receive payment for your work and the hours you put in. However, productivity standards might prove challenging to meet depending upon the patient census in the area. Let us consider what some physical therapists think of both reimbursement types.
Insights From the Industry
Here are insights from industry professionals regarding the question of reimbursement per hour or visit?
- There are pros and cons to both forms of reimbursement. However, from a staffing standpoint, reimbursement per visit is more beneficial for both parties. Caseloads continuously fluctuate, so reimbursing per visit allows you to keep both sides honest when it comes to billing. – Jeremy
- Reimbursement per visit takes management time off the supervisor but can lead to a decrease in quality. Management may be happy with the revenue, but with shortened visit times, quality will suffer. – Steve
- It depends on population density and the percentage of the population over 65. – Wanda
- Hitting productivity for the week is the key when paid per visit. Calling ahead to confirm with patients helps to keep down some cancellations. – Kristina
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