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Here’s Why You Hate Talking About The Price Of Your Services To Patients — And How To Overcome It

Ernesto Gutierrez, MD
2 min readJan 20, 2023

I used to hate talking about money with patients…

Mostly because I often felt attacked if they thought the price was high or if they asked clarifying questions. I also hated being asked about the price before I had a chance to talk to them. Nothing would sting more than spending 30 minutes in a consultation, showing a patient exactly how our treatment could help their condition and then hearing back, “I think it’s too expensive”.

Anyone who’s been on the receiving end of that phrase has certainly felt the pang of rejection.

No wonder we train ourselves to fear “the money” conversation…

But the thing we should internalize instead, is that “expensive” is relative.

For example, is a $10,000 price tag expensive?

As is often the case, the correct answer is, it depends. If we’re talking about a pair of sunglasses, then yes. It’s expensive.

But if someone comes around and tells you they’re selling their beachfront condo for $10,000?

Then it’s a bargain.

What’s valuable to one, might be invaluable to someone else.

The example I often give to clients is of an ortho surgeon.

Let’s assume this ortho surgeon is repairing a torn ACL in 3 different patients:

  • Patient 1 is a 39 year old, middle class man who slipped on some icy steps outside his home.
  • Patient 2 is a promising 19 year old college athlete who suffered an injury after a bad tackle playing soccer.
  • Patient 3 is a 29 year old NBA superstar who suffered an injury a week before the start of the season.

All 3 of them require essentially the same intervention. It will take the same amount of time. Require the same type and amount of materials. And will involve the exact same surgical team.

If the ortho surgeon decided to price this repair at $25k it might be seen as expensive by patient 1, adequate by patient 2, and a bargain by patient 3.

So instead of breaking your head trying to think of ways, tricks, and strategies to convince your existing patients to see “the value” in your services, figure out who’d see your existing price as a bargain and market to them.

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Ernesto Gutierrez, MD

I help experts build businesses aligned with their true life goals • Physician - Retired at 37 • Full-Time Dad & Husband 🤟🏻