Credit/Debt Cards and HSA Accounts

Q: I haven’t been accepting cards as form of payment. Now I would like to. I didn’t realize there were so many different options to choose from. I really would like one that is very user friendly and low on cost. What do you use or recommend? Square is the one I’ve heard the most about…

A: Now, more and more private practitioners are making credit card payment an option as the use of checkbooks and cash is dwindling. Especially with younger clients. They don’t carry checkbooks or much cash, only debit/credit cards.

Moreover, major employers and some private ACA insurance plans with large deductibles are starting to issue debit cards to access pre-tax dollars contributed to a medical flexible spending account (FSA).  This way, clients do not have to submit receipts and wait for reimbursement.

Accepting credit cards is a good business decision that offers the mental health professional many advantages: no more NSF checks, the money is deposited the same day, billing costs are defrayed, and you will no longer have to hear, “I forgot my checkbook!”

About 50% of my clients pay with a credit card. If you keep a credit card on file and the client gives permission, you can bill co-pays, deductibles, missed appointments, etc. Helps the cash flow.

Below are the major online credit card providers. If you purchased anything from my website or at a seminar you used PayPal. PayPal and Square offer free card swipers and charge no setup fee. Cost is 2.75-3% of services charged. You can purchase the chip  and contactless readers for a fee. Others allow you to enter credit card charges through a secure server and fees can vary.  I have personally used square, paypal and professional charges with good results. Square is the most popular. Just make sure you set up your account as medical so you can take the FSA cards.