How To Sell Patients An Elective Laser Procedure

In the 1989 classic film “Field of Dreams”, corn farmer Ray Kinsella (played by Kevin Costner) hears the now familiar phrase in a smoky whisper: “Build it and they will come”. Ray doesn’t understand the message, he doesn’t know what it means, and he doesn’t know who’s uttering these words. Disregarding logic and motivated by nothing more than faith, Ray plows over a large chunk of his crop to build his pristine baseball diamond.

Sometimes physicians need to suspend their own beliefs and dispel long held perceptions of what their patients will and will not do. Or more specifically, what they will and will not buy.

Patients WILL buy elective Nail Fungus Treatments

The recent advent of lasers to treat nail fungus has brought an interesting debate to light. That is, will patients stick to traditional alternatives that are covered by their medical insurance, or will they pay out of pocket for an elective laser procedure? Perhaps some doctors have become so accustomed to seeing so many patients with nail fungus – after all it affects an estimated 10% of the adult US population – that they are strictly rooted in the mindset of traditional treatment methods. Perhaps they are inhibited by their own beliefs that patients will not pay $500, $600, $700 or more to treat nail fungus when that expense comes directly out of the patient’s own pocket. In such cases, the physician becomes his own worst enemy.

People Will Pay for What They Want

As a physician, you probably have your own hobbies that you indulge in. If you love cars, you are likely to invest more in an automobile. If you play golf, you will probably splurge on the best set of clubs on the market. If you have a desire to see the world, you will budget accordingly to travel to all points on the globe you have dreamed about. For patients with nail fungus, even for older patients, don’t underestimate their dreams of what it would be like to reveal their toes in public without fear of embarrassment; or to go barefoot on a beach without a second thought. The fact is if you can provide a safe solution with minimal discomfort or inconvenience, patients won’t hesitate to pay to make their dreams come true.

You May Need Help To Make It Happen

You are a physician, not a salesman, so it’s understandable if you have hesitations or reservations about selling your patients an elective laser procedure. Yet if you see patients with nail fungus and you have even the slightest bit of doubt that they will pay for a laser service, your “block” is not only standing in the way of your patient’s end goals, but it’s also seriously holding back your own income potential.

After all, if you aren’t confident in your own abilities to convert a good chunk your patients to a laser treatment for nail fungus, then how are you possibly going to justify buying a device? Fortunately there are options to get you over the hump without doing so just because someone is whispering in your ear (“Buy it and they will come…”).

To Buy, To Lease, or To Go Mobile?

Fortunately for physicians who wish to provide laser services for the patients with nail fungus, the investment to do so is not particularly high. Outstanding options are available that could easily allow you to recoup your investment literally within the first few weeks of operation. However, if you are not sure how to effectively sell these services then you should seek out a laser distributor who can provide serious marketing support. After all, they are the experts at that sort of thing. With a little bit of training and appropriate sales and promotional material, they can have you poised to turn your nail patients into a serious profit center for you and your practice.

Leasing is an option that will allow you to ease into ownership without any significant financial outlay. In fact, many leasing companies allow for up to 90-days deferred payment at the front end of your lease, with dramatically reduced payments for the balance of the first year. For instance, if your normal lease payment was $700 per month, it is not uncommon to pay nothing at all for the first three months, and then only pay about $350 per month for the next nine months. This allows you to get ramp up your laser services without any immediate financial pressure.

Finally, many physicians want to see the proof in the pudding before taking a bite. For those who fall into this category you may want to consider a Mobile Laser Service to introduce the procedure to your patients. A Mobile Service will typically come into your practice with a laser on a specified day in which you have scheduled treatments. They will either perform the treatment or help you do so. In either case, you have incurred no equipment expense and you walk away with a percentage of the sales amount paid. However, take great care in selecting the RIGHT Mobile Service. Companies who simply suggest that they are “on call” for you whenever you need to perform the treatments really provide nothing in the way of marketing or sales support. Leaving some brochures, posters, or tent cards on the laser procedure in your office is not going to magically convert your patients to laser. In cases such as these you will likely find that you are only using these services very occasionally because you really haven’t developed any sort of skill at converting your nail fungus patients to laser services. Conversely, there are Mobile Laser Providers who will do it all for you, including consulting the patient, taking treatment photos, performing debridement if necessary, and naturally the treatment itself. They will literally “train” your office on scheduling patients for the mobile service and they will absolutely maximize the availability of laser for your patients.
Choose wisely and you will end up as happy as the patients you are treating.

About Stephen C Fox

Stephen C. Fox is the Founder and President of MedaVenture which provides management and consulting services for hundreds of aesthetic medical practices throughout the United States and Canada. For more information on MedaVenture and what they can do for your medical practice go to
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