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Inspiring Conversations with Sushma Patel of Body in Motion Physical Therapy

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sushma Patel.

Hi Sushma, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
While starting my own business had always been a dream, I never imagined the company would evolve from a chance encounter with a former patient.

Years ago, I met a patient that would change my life. She was a client who had suffered chronic low back pain and after many failed treatments and no resolution in sight, she confided in me to help resolve her symptoms. Over the next several weeks, we worked closely and accomplished her goals of living a pain-free and productive life. For the first time in years, she was able to exercise and tolerate her daily activities without pain.

“Having suffered from chronic lower back pain for years, I was a bit skeptical when my physician suggested more physical therapy! Was I surprised! The “hands on” approach of Sushma Patel at Fyzical Prairie Village has changed my life completely. I am doing things that I haven’t been able to do for years. And – she gave me realistic exercises to keep my back in shape. My doctor was right – she is a miracle worker!” B.Ross

I was simply doing my “job” but for her, it meant so much more! A friendship evolved and I was soon renting space from my “former” patient under the name of Fyzical Prairie Village.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
While every business has its struggles, we have been fortunate to have support from our physicians, our ever-growing referral base and my amazing team to keep us moving forward.

That being said a business always has its struggles.

Perhaps the largest challenge for us has been finding the best staff to carry out our vision and philosophy/culture. It took many years of understanding how to hire and structure job responsibilities so that the expectations were clear.

The other big struggle has been the lack of health insurance options for small business. The cost typically is not sustainable for small business and puts limits on your hiring pool as many require benefits.

Health insurance companies continue to reduce payments which directly impacts our bottom line. The greater frustration is that large hospitals (with less personal/one on one care) are reimbursed at a significantly higher rate than the small, freestanding clinics.

Physician owned Physical Therapy clinics are also an issue and direct conflict of interest. As physicians and hospital steer their patients towards system-based care (in which they have financial interest in) not disclosing that customers have a choice where to receive their care.

We’ve been impressed with Body in Motion Physical Therapy, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Fyzical Prairie VIllage is Kansas City’s only combined outpatient Physical Therapy (PT) clinic and PT guided exercise studio under one roof. We provide a hands-on friendly environment with state-of-the-art equipment helping patients live a pain-free active life. Our patients find the clinic to be a welcoming and intimate setting where they are given personalized attention and hands-on care. Through our strong referral base, 95% retention rate of previous clients and our ever-growing “word of mouth” referrals, We have evolved into a niche practice in the heart of Prairie Village, Kansas. We offer a customized private rehabilitation track as well as small group and private classes. Our unique approach helps our clients learn the most effective exercise techniques to avoid injury and speed recovery.

Fyzical-Prairie Village has a friendly staff that always aims to please.

Fyzical- Prairie Village is owned and operated by Sushma Patel, PT, MTC who has more than twenty-five years of experience in this industry.

In terms of your work and the industry, what are some of the changes you are expecting to see over the next five to ten years?
There will be a greater need than ever for physical therapy in the upcoming years. According to the Urban Institute, the number of Americans over the age of 65 is predicted to double in just 40 years. This directly translates to an increased need for physical therapists as the aging population will need skilled care for conditions such as balance and gait, hip and knee replacements and patients who suffer from Parkinson’s disease and arthritis. Healthcare is also changing significantly, mergers and acquisitions are on the rise. Hospitals and doctors are trying now harder than ever to keep their patients within their own care networks. This translates to the independent physical therapy clinics seeing less and less direct referrals. We rely on our own marketing and social media platforms now more than ever. I think what we will see in the future is a more direct link to our patients, and less so with insurance companies and large hospitals. As mentioned before, the Medicare reimbursement rate is lower than ever and this drives physical therapists to see a significantly higher number of patients who pay cash for services as they advocate and educate themselves on their own healthcare. A major shift for physical therapy is happening now as more and more patients are looking for a holistic approach and finding safer alternatives to opioids.

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