You already know that outcomes data is important—and it’s becoming more important by the day as our healthcare system continues to shift from a fee-for-service model to a pay-for-performance one. And if you’ve read this post, this one, or this one, you already know the best ways to implement outcomes data collection in your practice. But, do you know how to use your outcomes data to your advantage—to ensure you’re getting the very best return on your outcomes data investment? You will after reading this post. Here are four must-know strategies for proving the ROI of your outcomes data collection:

Physical Therapy Billing Open Forum - Regular BannerPhysical Therapy Billing Open Forum - Small Banner

1. Prevent patients from bailing on therapy before their treatment is complete.

No one wants to see their patients missing appointments—or worse, disappearing completely only partway through their course of treatment. In most cases, this type of non-compliance doesn’t bode well for a patient’s physical health—or the financial health of your practice. With patient-reported outcomes data, though, there’s a way to get ahead of the problems that cause patients to leave—whatever those might be—and fix them before your patients become unresponsive and you lose out on the payment you were hoping to receive. After all, you’ll already have all the patient satisfaction data you need right at your fingertips. Then, using outcomes software that presents that data in an easy-to-understand way, you can identify the patients who are anything but completely satisfied with their services—and address their concerns directly. Say hello to happier patients and a better bottom line.

2. Ensure your performance is top-notch—at both the clinic and therapist level.

You can use outcomes data to track a number of important things, including how your clinic—and therapists—are performing across the board and by individual test. By rolling up all of your data into a high-level summary, you’ll know if, for example, one test is showing a lower percentage of change than the others—in which case you could schedule a clinic-wide training or bring on a staff member with specific knowledge in the area in which your team is lacking. This level of detail can also be incredibly helpful when it comes to completing objective performance reviews. After all, you’ll know exactly where each member of your staff stands. From there, you can set concrete goals—say, a specific percentage increase on a particular test—by which to measure future performance.

3. Better market your services directly to patients and referrers.

With a solid outcomes data collection game plan, you’ll know exactly how your clinic is stacking up to the national average for each test. Then, you can use this data—which essentially conveys how much time and money your patients save by receiving treatment in your clinic instead of anyone else’s—to better market yourself to potential patients and referral sources.

And even if you don’t land at the top of the heap, you’ll know exactly where you have room for improvement—and that can be a huge motivator for you and your staff members to kick it into gear. You could also use this information strategically: for example, if you see that your therapists are knocking it out of the park for low back pain patients, but are barely reaching par for treating shoulder injuries, then you could concentrate your marketing efforts on bringing in more low back pain patients while simultaneously working to improve your shoulder programs. Now, that’s what we call leveraging your strengths.

4. Boost referrals and negotiate better payer contracts.

Chances are good that you became a therapist to help people—and there’s really nothing more important than that. With the right outcomes software, you’ll be able to not only view—but also showcase—the value of the care you provide your patients. In other words, you’ll be able to quantify your patients’ improvement by visit. You’ll even be able to further filter your data to acquire referrer or payer-specific statistics that you can use to increase your referrals and enhance your payer contracts. Talk about a solid way to definitively prove the value of PT—and generate more patients (and payments) in the process.


Before you implement any of these strategies, though, be sure to get baseline measurements for each (e.g., how many patients stop therapy early, how you stack up against the national averages, and how many referrals you generate each month). Then, monitor your clinic’s progress at consistent intervals—say, every six months or once a quarter. That way, you’ll know that any changes to these metrics—and your bottom line—are directly related to your outcomes collection initiatives, thus proving your outcomes data collection is worth its weight in gold.

Wondering how you can view and track all this juicy outcomes data in WebPT? Check out this post to learn more.

  • 7 Shades of Coding Controversy (PTCPS Special Report, Part 2)  Image

    articleFeb 11, 2016 | 16 min. read

    7 Shades of Coding Controversy (PTCPS Special Report, Part 2)

    In the first post of this three-part series, I provided an in-depth look at the history and philosophy behind the APTA’s proposed Physical Therapy Classification and Payment System (PTCPS). If adopted—and as of now, that looks pretty likely—this CPT coding overhaul would completely change the way physical therapists code for the services they provide. The kicker? PTs could be required to begin using the new codes—some of them, anyway—as early as January 1, 2017, with full implementation …

  • Why My Practice Can’t Live Without Outcomes Tracking Image

    articleMar 15, 2017 | 3 min. read

    Why My Practice Can’t Live Without Outcomes Tracking

    If you don’t measure it, you cannot improve it. For a long time, as our business was growing, we operated by feel. And we “felt” we were doing a good job. Once we started tracking our physical therapy outcomes , though, we finally knew. We found out that we were doing a good job—in some areas. In other areas, we found out that we needed more work. The main point is that we were flying blind until …

  • Founder Letter: PQRS is Dead, But Your Data-Analysis Efforts Should Live On Image

    articleDec 6, 2016 | 6 min. read

    Founder Letter: PQRS is Dead, But Your Data-Analysis Efforts Should Live On

    If there’s one thing I know about rehab therapists, it’s that we are all very busy people. If your to-do list is anything like mine, it’s growing faster than you can prune it—and has probably expanded onto multiple sheets of paper (or maybe even into multiple notebooks). And regardless of the value associated with each item on the docket, we tend to refer to these tasks as things we “have” to do—not things we “get” to do. …

  • Triumph in the Triple-Aim Game: The Healthcare Executive’s Guide to Readmission Reduction, Patient Safety Promotion, and ACO Success Image

    downloadSep 28, 2016

    Triumph in the Triple-Aim Game: The Healthcare Executive’s Guide to Readmission Reduction, Patient Safety Promotion, and ACO Success

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) and other reform efforts have brought forth a renewed emphasis on care coordination at all points along the care continuum—including the period after hospital discharge. As part of this push, new financial incentives and penalties have put healthcare executives at the center of a high-pressure game of tug-of-war in which they must simultaneously improve care quality and reduce costs. Talk about a catch-22. Enter your email address below to download this guide …

  • Is PT Valuable? Why Outcomes Data is the Proof We Need Image

    webinarFeb 3, 2016

    Is PT Valuable? Why Outcomes Data is the Proof We Need

    In this day and age, it seems like everybody wants more for less—and that’s certainly true in the healthcare realm. With nationwide reform efforts pushing providers to deliver higher-quality care at a lower cost, value—and the ability to prove it—is absolutely critical. Most rehab therapists will tell you the services they provide are more valuable than anyone knows. And that’s precisely the problem. No one knows the value of physical and occupational therapy. But outcomes tracking can …

  • WebPT + Outcomes: A PT Software Love Story Image

    articleMar 7, 2016 | 7 min. read

    WebPT + Outcomes: A PT Software Love Story

    Developing and launching WebPT Outcomes has been a labor of love—one that’s lasted about 15 months. At times, it felt more like the kind of love you’d have for a sibling—after he or she pushes you off the bunk bed and you split your lip open. You know, that kind of love. But, after lots of triumphs—and just as many fat lips—it’s been wonderful seeing the fruits of our labor come to life. Hello, WebPT Outcomes: the …

  • Fight for Your Right to PT: 10 To-Dos from the 10th Annual Graham Sessions Image

    articleJan 24, 2017 | 17 min. read

    Fight for Your Right to PT: 10 To-Dos from the 10th Annual Graham Sessions

    The first rule of the Graham Sessions is that you don’t talk about the Graham Sessions. Well, sort of. This annual “think tank” event isn’t quite as clandestine as Fight Club, but the rules are definitely a bit different than those associated with any other PT industry conference. After all, the point of this meeting is, quite simply, to talk—to have real, open, honest conversations about the controversial issues facing the physical therapy community. And to ensure …

  • 4 Reasons PTs Can’t Afford to Ignore Coding Reform (PTCPS Special Report, Part 3) Image

    articleFeb 15, 2016 | 6 min. read

    4 Reasons PTs Can’t Afford to Ignore Coding Reform (PTCPS Special Report, Part 3)

    For most PTs, coding for service charges is kind of an afterthought—something they do at the end of the day, after they’ve finished up all of their paperwork. It’s a task that—while not the most exciting endeavor—is fairly straightforward: find the CPT code that matches the service provided, calculate the correct number of units, record everything appropriately, and move on to bigger and better things (i.e., treating and healing patients). But, in less than a year, that …

  • Founder Letter: We Are Not a Commodity: The Value of Physical Therapists vs. Physical Therapy Image

    articleAug 9, 2016 | 6 min. read

    Founder Letter: We Are Not a Commodity: The Value of Physical Therapists vs. Physical Therapy

    “I’m going to physical therapy.” Whenever anyone—a friend, a colleague, or even a family member—says this to me, I feel a twinge of disappointment. I know, it sounds crazy coming from me; I am a physical therapist, after all. But that is precisely the reason behind my discontent: I am a physical therapist—a doctorate-level medical professional with the skills and education necessary to diagnose, treat, and coordinate care for my patients. I am not some nameless, faceless …

Achieve greatness in practice with the ultimate EMR for PTs, OTs, and SLPs.