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Episode 47: Steps to Catalyze a Membership Program for Your Patients

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“I didn’t realize that functional medicine is a partnership. It’s 50/50. As the physician, I’m responsible for that 10,000 foot altitude view of providing that map, the landscape, the trajectory, and the patients responsible for making difficult changes whether it’s habits or food. I didn’t realize that not having a vetting process was going to hurt me more than make it accessible to my community,” explains host Dr. Lara Salyer. When Dr. Lara first opened her functional medicine practice back in 2017, she made many mistakes along the way. As she learned more and tried different approaches, Dr. Lara eventually decided to implement a membership program which helps her business function more effectively for both herself and her patients.

When Dr. Lara first opened her private practice in rural Wisconsin, she made several mistakes that caused her business to suffer and made her begin to start feeling the same type of overwhelm that she had left traditional medicine to get away from. She did not have any type of vetting program, so often the people making appointments ended up not being a good fit for the practice. After about a year and a half of slowly implementing new methods such as a low cost signature course on functional medicine, free 15 minute pre-visit strategy sessions, and courses on Teachable, Dr. Lara decided to offer a tier based membership program. The three tiers of membership allow for patients to pay for what they actually need and to graduate down to a lower tier as their health improves.

There are three main types of memberships that you can implement for your practice. These types are the tier based membership used by Dr. Lara, a key and lock membership which is a low monthly charge that gets patients in the door but may require extra charges for anything not included, and the final type is a basic educational membership that is just a simple monthly charge for access to your courses. If you are interested in designing a membership program for your patients, it can be a really great way to enhance value and to make sure your patients are actually in alignment with your clinic’s goals.

About The Catalyst Host, Dr. Lara Salyer:

I worked as a family physician for 15 years until burnout changed the trajectory of my career. I realized I wanted to start a holistic functional medicine practice in my rural hometown and made it happen. In addition to practicing functional medicine, I now mentor practitioners who are looking to change their paths in healthcare by using what I refer to as the “Catalyst Roadmap”. I share each step of this framework with listeners so that they may apply it to their careers, relationships, personal goals, and projects. 

In This Episode I'm Talking About:

  • The 3 main types of memberships that you can implement for your practice
  • The importance of a vetting program vs. an all accessible program
  • How to overcome overwhelm by  implementing new methods
  • How 3 tiers of membership allow for patients to pay for what they actually need

Quotes:

  • “I didn’t realize that functional medicine is a partnership. It’s 50/50. As the physician, I’m responsible for that 10,000 foot altitude view of providing that map, the landscape, the trajectory, and the patients responsible for making difficult changes whether it’s habits or food. I didn’t realize that not having a vetting process was going to hurt me more than make it accessible to my community.” (4:40-5:06 | Dr. Lara)

 

  • “Just because you have staff doesn’t mean that you’re efficient or that you will be streamlined. I had a health coach, I had a massage therapist in house renting a room in my office. I thought there’d be no way that this couldn’t succeed. And I couldn’t have been more wrong.” (6:17-6:30 | Dr. Lara)

 

  • “Both patient and doctor can be spending really excellent effort on change and transformation, but nothing is guaranteed in the body. You could be taking all the right supplements, eating the right organic foods, but you could have triggers, trauma, body somatic responses to things that aren’t even in the plan.” (16:56-17:15 | Dr. Lara)

 

  • “You can become burned out in functional medicine just as easily as you can in standard medicine. So these three tiered membership documents are wonderful to give a visual representation to patients of what’s included and what isn’t and what to expect.” (32:52-33:06 | Dr. Lara)

Links for this Episode:

Connect with Dr. Lara Salyer:

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