FAQs & Insurance Information
What is chiropractic?
Chiropractic is the science, philosophy and art based upon the understanding that good health depends upon a normally functioning nervous system (especially the spine, and the nerves extending from the spine to all parts of the body). “Chiropractic” comes from the Greek word chiropraktikos, meaning “effective treatment by hand.” Chiropractic stresses the idea that the cause of many disease processes begins with the body’s inability to adapt to its environment. It looks to address these diseases not by the use of drugs and chemicals, but by locating and adjusting a musculoskeletal area of the body which is functioning improperly.
What conditions benefit from chiropractic care?
There is probably much you do not know about the why & how of chiropractic. You may think chiropractic is only for people with low back pain or headaches. While chiropractic has had great success with these two ailments, the greater purpose of chiropractic is to optimize health and strengthen the body to suit any environment. Simply, chiropractic works and you should try it – #getadjusted #feelbetter
But just in case you need more:
- Referring your family and friends is helping them be healthier & happier! Chiropractic care is being used by more and more people with excellent results. There has been a 100% increase in the number of people seeing chiropractors in the last 20 years (Spine, 2-1-2002).
- Chiropractic helps communication! There are four vital needs that you must have in order to survive: (1) nourishment (food) (2) water (3) oxygen (4) nerve flow (communication from the brain to the body).
- Chiropractic affects blood chemistry! Patients under long term chiropractic care had higher levels of the blood chemicals associated with effective DNA repair and overall wellness. (Jrnl of Vertebral Subluxation, 2005)
- Chiropractic affects overall body function! In a study of 5607 adults in 7 countries, patients who began chiropractic care without any neuromusculoskeletal complaints reported an improvement in allergies, breathing, circulation, digestion, asthma, hearing and heart function. (Self-reported non-musculoskeletal responses to chiropractic intervention. Jrnl of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 28, 294-302)
- Poor posture leads to poor health! In a study of 752 adults that were x-rayed (full spine), all measures of health status showed significantly poorer scores as C7 plumb line deviation increased. Even minor forward head/body position was shown to be detrimental to a patient’s overall health. (The Impact of positive sagittal balance in adult spinal deformity. Spine. 2005, 4, S113-S114)
- Chiropractic reduces pain, restores health and saves money! Musculoskeletal conditions are the leading cause of disability affecting 1 in 3 Americans and costs our society an estimated $254 billion every year.
- Your choices matter to your health! In a study that followed over 3000 people changing four habits: (1) Not smoking (2) 3.5 hours exercise per week (3) Healthier diet (4) Healthier body weight; the results showed diabetes decreased by 93%, heart attacks decreased by 81%, strokes decreased by 50% and the occurrence of cancer decreased by 38%. (Archives of Internal Medicine)
Chiropractic increases the health of the workplace! Chiropractic care can save money and enhance employee options. (Wall Street Journal, 2-22-2004)
- Chiropractic is much safer! There are over 100,000 accidental deaths caused by medical providers each year. The risk of complications with NSAID’s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, like aspirin) is 3.2 in 1000. The risk of complication in cervical (neck) spine surgeries is 15.6 in 1000. The risk of complication with a cervical chiropractic adjustment is 6.39 in 10,000,000.
- You can Stop suffering and Start living! Chiropractic is the best treatment for chronic spinal pain showing the best results in the shortest time, least side effects and best results in improved general health. (Spine, July 2003)
Will the chiropractic adjustment hurt?
Under normal circumstances, adjustments don’t hurt. The patient may experience a minor amount of discomfort during the adjustment which lasts only seconds.
What is the “cracking/popping” sound?
Your spinal joints contain a fluid known as synovium. The synovial fluid contains dissolved gases; mostly carbon dioxide. When your spine is adjusted, a vacuum is created within the joint as the joint surfaces are distracted and the dissolved gasses come out of solution, forming a gas bubble. This vacuum often creates a “pop”. This is the same reason for the noise created as you “pop” your knuckles.
Contrary to popular belief, treatment success is not dependent on this noise. Motion has been shown to occur in the joint with or without a cavitation, or “popping” sound.
Are chiropractic adjustments safe?
Chiropractic adjustments or manipulations are extremely safe. The risk factor of injury is estimated to be in excess of one million to one. Your chances of being struck by lightning are greater than you having a problem with your chiropractic treatment.
What kind of education and training do doctors of chiropractic have?
Chiropractors receive an education that emphasizes neuromuscular diagnosis and treatment. Preparation for the practice of chiropractic is concentrated on three areas of learning; basic training in the biological and health sciences (anatomy, physiology, histology, biochemistry, clinical and radiological diagnosis); specialized training in the chiropractic discipline (theoretical studies, practice, diagnosis and applications); and extensive clinical training.
Does Dr. Bo give any other health tips besides chiropractic?
We thought you would never ask! Below you will find ‘8 tips for healthy living.’
- Stay Positive: People who see the glass half-full have more energy, are less sick and are a pleasure to be around.
- Make Time For Yourself: Realizing that you are unique and important can be a life-changing event.
- Laugh Often: If we can learn to laugh at ourselves, then many of life’s problems seem smaller. Laughing should be seen as “internal jogging!” Laugh often and out loud.
- Eat Healthy But Happy: Eating can be healthy and fun. Many times people make eating such a task that all the fun is taken out. The key is balance.
- Exercise Regularly: It is important to stay active. Staying active keeps your joints healthy, reduces stress, and gives you more energy. Again, make exercise fun and simple — use the stairs/park in the last spot — just be creative.
- Do Not Smoke: We all know the effects of smoking but what you may not know is that smoking leads to a decrease in tissue healing. This means if injured, your body will have to work harder to recover than it normally would.
- Drink Water: Water is the medium of life. It is part of everything in your body. Try adding fruit extract or vinegar to your water for a change.
- Reduce Stress: Life at times is stressful. However, if you learn techniques to reduce stress, you will live longer and be healthier. Stress is a major contributor to many major illnesses. It leads to increased blood pressure, increased cardiac output, increased muscle tension, etc…
How does insurance work?
While scheduling an appointment at Trinity, you will be asked if you would like to use insurance or “self pay.” If the choice is to use insurance, then all insurance information will be gathered at the first visit. We will set up everything for you and submit a claim for each visit. The charge will be either the co-pay listed on the insurance card or $25.00. After the visit a claim will be sent to your insurance company. The claim tells the company your diagnosis and the treatment received in our office. The company processes this information and creates an “explanation of benefits” or an E.O.B. A copy of this explanation is sent to our office and to you. The EOB tells both of us what amount the insurance company is paying Trinity for visits and the amount you are responsible for paying our office. Our insurance specialist will enter the information into our computer and adjust your account accordingly. Meaning, if you paid a $25.00 co-pay for your visit and it should have been $20.00, you will receive a credit of $5.00 for each visit overpaid. The opposite is also true. If we charged $25.00 per visit and the co-pay was actually $30.00 you will be billed for the additional $5.00 per visit.
Important Insurance Terms
In-Network: Doctors can choose to be “in-network” with certain companies. In order to be in-network the doctor must agree to accept the amount of money the insurance company says a service is worth. Then the doctor will write off the rest. For example, the doctor will charge $61.00 dollars for an adjustment, but Blue Cross Blue Shield says that same service is only worth $44.32. That is all they will pay. So the doctor will accept that payment and write off the $16.68.
The amount your insurance company will pay for services is different for doctors who are NOT in network. So if you chose to see a doctor out of network you will probably end up paying more out of your pocket for the services.
Deductible: This is the amount that must be paid out of pocket before your insurance will pay anything on a claim. So for example, if you have a $300.00 deductible then you will pay $300.00 worth of bills to your Doctor(s) before your insurance pays anything. After you have paid or “met” your deductible, your doctor visits will be subject to a co-pay, co-insurance, or may be paid completely by your insurance company. It all depends on your plan.
Co-pay: a set amount that you pay each time you go to the doctor. The insurance company will pay the rest of the visit. Sometimes there is a higher co-pay to see a specialist and a lower one when seeing your regular doctor. For example: You may pay $25.00 each time you go to your family doctor. But you may pay $35.00 when you go to see the heart doctor.
Co-insurance: Co-insurance is a percentage of the bill that you pay yourself; the rest is paid by your insurance company. So if there is a 20% co-insurance you will pay 20% of the charges for your visit and your insurance company will pay the other 80%.
Good Faith Estimate
You have the right to receive a “Good Faith Estimate” explaining how much your health care will cost.
Under the law, health care providers need to give patients who don’t have insurance or who are not using insurance an estimate of the bill for medical items and services.
- You have the right to receive a Good Faith Estimate for the total expected cost of any non-emergency items or services. This includes related costs like medical tests, prescription drugs, equipment, and hospital fees.
- Make sure your health care provider gives you a Good Faith Estimate in writing at least one business day before your medical service or item. You can also ask your health care provider, and any other provider you choose, for a Good Faith Estimate before you schedule an item or service.
- If you receive a bill that is at least $400 more than your Good Faith Estimate, you can dispute the bill.
- Make sure to save a copy or picture of your Good Faith Estimate.
For questions or more information about your right to a Good Faith Estimate, visit www.cms.gov/nosurprises.
Myths About Insurance
Myth 1: “I have insurance so they should pay for everything.” It is rare that an insurance plan will pay all of your medical bills. Most often the company asks you to pay a portion of your medical visits either through co-insurance or co-pays or yearly deductibles.
Myth 2: “If I receive a bill from the office this means that my visit wasn’t covered by my insurance.” Just because you owe our office money doesn’t mean that the services were not covered. Often, by consulting the explanation of benefits (EOB) for that visit you will be able to see why there is a charge. (deductible, co-pay or co-insurance)
Myth 3: “The staff at Trinity should be able to tell me what my insurance plan covers” It is your responsibility to know what your plan covers and what it does not cover. You can call the number on your insurance card and ask them about your coverage at any time.
In reference to seeing the chiropractor, the questions you need to ask about your plan are the following:
- Does my plan cover chiropractic visits? If so how many visits per year
- Will I have to pay a deductible, co-pay or coinsurance on my chiropractic visits? (if you have a deductible to meet you should ask how much you have remaining)
Myth 4: “If I have insurance I have to use it” Some people choose not to use their insurance in our office. Instead they are “self pay” patients. Self pay patients receive a discount for paying at the time of service. For some people who have high deductibles this is better for them financially.
When you have insurance you have entered into a contract with an insurance company. Every contract or plan is different even within the same company. Your insurance company will also have adjusted your plan based on your health. For example, if you have a pre-existing condition then anything related to that condition will not be covered by your plan, even if it is a service that would normally be covered for anyone else on your plan. The benefit to being in contract with the insurance company is that they have contracts with physicians that will help you get discounted services. (with “in-network” providers)
Every month someone pays your “premium”. Your premium is that amount of money you pay for your insurance normally per month. You could pay it yourself or perhaps your place of employment pays a portion for you. You are purchasing a “plan” from the company. It is important as a customer of an insurance company that you know what your plan does and does not cover. That way you can make sure that they pay for services that they agreed to pay for and you are not surprised when they don’t pay for services they never agreed to cover.
When asking for information about your plan you might have trouble understanding what is being said. Terms like ”subject to deductible”, “subject to co-pay”, “subject to co-insurance”, “in-network and out of network” and “maximum out of pocket” will be used to describe your coverage. In reference to seeing the chiropractor the questions you need to ask about your plan are these:
- Does my plan cover chiropractic visits? If so, how many visits per year?
- Will I have to pay a deductible, co-pay or coinsurance on my chiropractic visits? (if you have a deductible to meet, ask how much you have remaining)