Every speech, occupational and physical therapist who treats private pay clients needs to make a very important decision:
how much to charge for private pay services.
If I had a dollar for every question I've been emailed -
or Facebook group post I've read that asks,
"What is the going rate for SLP/OT/PT services in X area?"
I could retire at 34 :-)
First Off - DO NOT Base Your Rate on Someone Else
You shouldn't price your services on some sort of arbitrary going rate.
It's not smart for these reasons:
1.) You know nothing about their level of experience.
2.) You know nothing about their clinical expertise.
3.) You know nothing about the quality of services they are providing - or what population you're serving.
4.) It can be construed as price fixing, which is illegal.
If you are running (or plan to run) your own occupational, physical or speech therapy private practice, you need to make sure you're doing it the smart way. Basing your rates on the the rates of other professionals is not smart.
Don't do it.
"Simply put: do not base your price
on what other people are charging."
Be Careful Not to Set Your Price Too Low (or Too High)
If you set your rate too high, you might not have as many clients.
While I can't tell you a specific "magic" rate - I can help you determine what rate makes the most sense for you and your practice.
Most clinicians are scared of charging too much for their services, so they sell themselves and their services short and charge less than they should. You have a Master's degree and are a clinical specialist. Don't be afraid to charge a fair rate!
SLPs, OTs and PTs provide valuable services that private clients are willing to pay for. They are happy to exchange money for themselves or their loved one to get better.
People want to "get better" (whatever that means to them) and are willing to pay for it.
What You Should Base Your Private Therapy Rate On
as well as on factors related to the cost of running your private practice (ex. travel time, overhead costs, etc.).
Base your private therapy fee on what YOU bring to your clients and the clinical and functional benefits you provide.
Need Help Deciding On Your Rate?
If you're interested in more information about setting your hourly rate - check out The Guide to Setting Your Hourly Rate.
Here's what you'll learn:
It also comes with a nifty Hourly Rate Calculator.
All for $10 bucks.
You can get it right here :-)
Jena H. Casbon, MS CCC-SLP is a speech-language pathologist and private practice consultant. She started her own speech therapy private practice in 2006. She is the founder of The Independent Clinician and author of The Guide to Private Patients and The Guide to Creating a Web Presence for Your Private Practice. Since 2008, she has helped thousands of clinicians get the flexibility, income and freedom they desire from starting their own private speech therapy, occupational therapy and physical therapy practices.