GDN: What problems are DSOs facing when it comes to helping patients move forward with treatment?
BK: Not enough people can afford the care they need, and finance companies aren’t meeting the needs of patients or providers. That’s why DSOs often juggle several finance partners in hopes of getting their patients approved for care. This is an inefficient process and practices are absolutely overwhelmed navigating multiple credit solutions with low approval rates and partial approvals. All of this results in a terrible experience for patients with providers treating fewer people. In short, the experience is broken, and not enough people are getting approved for care.
GDN: Why do so many patients get denied for financing?
BK: Traditional patient finance companies deny more than 50% of people who apply for financing because of tight credit requirements that cater to patients with prime to super-prime credit. From a business standpoint, DSOs require a better solution considering there are over 160 million Americans with non-prime credit. Providers need one, turnkey patient finance solution that allows them to serve patients across the income and credit spectrum.
GDN: Why did you decide to tackle these issues and launch your own patient finance company?
BK: As a former operator of an orthodontic DSO, I was so frustrated with the process of helping my patients get approved for care. I saw first-hand how patients struggled to pay for out-of-pocket expenses and it was heartbreaking when they could not get approved for financing for themselves or their children. We offered a house payment plan for patients who were denied financing, but that wasn’t a great solution either because we did not know a patient’s ability to pay, and we were not great at collecting payments from our own patients. I knew there had to be a better way, so I decided to build the patient finance platform I wish I had when I was operating my DSO.
GDN: How is PrimaHealth Credit different from other finance companies? Why did the world need another finance solution?
BK: We are on a mission to democratize access to care. And that is not something you hear very often in patient finance. It’s easy to finance those with excellent credit. But that leaves too many people without access to care. I started PrimaHealth Credit because the industry needed one patient finance solution that could approve most patients with one credit application. So that’s what we did. In partnership with Citizens Bank we launched the Greenlight program, a one-application-for-everyone solution that approves up to 90% of people so providers can treat more patients, and patients can get the care they need with an affordable monthly payment.
Unlike other patient finance solutions, the PrimaHealth Credit and Citizens Bank partnership brings the agility of a fintech with the strength of a bank to deliver a world class experience that finally addresses market needs: one application, instant approvals, real-time reporting, and a custom finance program built for dental and orthodontic practices.
GDN: Why is it important for you to help as many people as possible access care?
BK: Limited access to financial solutions means limited access to care. We want to change that. Serving credit challenged and underbanked patients doesn’t have to be a scary or unprofitable proposition. There are so many reasons why someone might have credit that isn’t perfect including students, people with low income, or a brief period of unemployment due to hardships such as COVID. And the way you approach approving people who don’t have great credit isn’t with traditional underwriting. You need sophisticated credit analytics that can analyze hundreds of attributes to assess a patient’s ability to pay. That’s our superpower. We’ve built a platform that delivers deep credit analytics and machine learning to accurately match patients to payments they can afford. There’s no reason why only prime credit customers should be able to access patient finance solutions to pay for their care over time. We help more patients get approved so practices can profitably care for more people.
GDN: How much additional revenue can practices expect to add to their business?
BK: Great question. We build patient finance programs for our partners that are specific to their business: their terms, their payback options and their risk tolerance. We are helping providers grow production by up to 20%, while reducing bad debt write-offs and increasing cash flow.
GDN: What does the future of patient finance look like?
BK: Technology will continue to help transform healthcare so more patients can access the care they need, and providers can just focus on providing great care. Transparency, fairness, and accessibility are the table stakes. Providers will stop juggling multiple financing solutions and will instead build a deep partnership with a finance partner who actively participates in the growth and success of their business. That’s the PrimaHealth Credit model today. And we continue to innovate to deliver experiences and solutions that make the patient finance experience as simple, honest and helpful as possible.
Together we can provide more care for more people.
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