Did You Know?
Just like you can decide to visit your dentist or eye doctor any time you choose when issues arise with your vision or teeth, you can now choose to see your physical therapist first when issues arise with your mobility.
PTs are the most highly trained musculoskeletal & neurological professionals in the healthcare industry. And as of July 1, the State of Wyoming, your legislators and Governor recognized the expert skills PTs possess and signed into law Direct Access for Physical Therapy. This marks Wyoming as the 19th state to observe physical therapists as a first point of contact in healthcare.
What does this mean for me?
In the past, when experiencing physical limitations, you were most likely required to first visit your primary care physician and secure a prescription for physical therapy. With the new unrestricted direct access law, you now can visit your physical therapist first. This allows your PT to conduct a careful, multifactorial consultation to determine the root cause of pain, afterwich your PT will discuss the best course of care. This may involve a physical therapy plan or referral to a specialist.
“Direct access increases the ability to collaborate between healthcare providers without huge roadblocks for the patient. As physical therapists, we work closely with other healthcare providers to coordinate care that is ultimately best for the patient.”–Brent Kaufman, Payment Chair of WPTA and Founder of Fremont Therapy Group
Unrestricted Direct Access streamlines your course of care and eliminates time lost between doctor’s appointments and reduces the use of pain medications. For your health, PTs are always collaborating with all healthcare specialists to get you the comprehensive care you deserve.
Why see a physical therapist first?
Physical therapists are highly educated experts in the movement and function of the human body and are essential participants in the healthcare delivery system. Your physical therapist can help you with recovery from injury/surgery, but also in prevention and health maintenance with programs designed to promote your wellness and fitness. Just as you visit your dentist for regular checkups, your PT should be another healthcare provider you visit at least yearly for a “tune-up”.
Jeff Alcorn, Clinic Director of Rocky Mountain Sports notes,
“We offer and encourage the public to visit us for free consultations. Whether you are experiencing a mobility issue or are working to get in shape for hunting or athletic event, our expert staff of PTs can assess your current level of function and offer a plan of attack to get you moving at an optimal level.”
Can I choose where I seek PT?
Yes, you have the right to choose the Physical Therapist you feel is best for you. You should take an active role in your rehabilitation by researching the physical therapy practice that will best meet your needs. It’s important to work with a PT you feel comfortable with. As a patient, you are also responsible for your healing process, and your chances for a full recovery will be greater if you have a strong and trustful working relationship with your therapist, and be able to follow their advice. This is your healthcare dollar, you have the right to choose.
Be a consumer, educate yourself, and choose the best PT for you. It’s your right to get all the information you can before making a final decision.
The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) recommends the following criteria when selecting a physical therapist:
- Contact the physical therapist’s clinic to determine the services offered. All physical therapists have extensive training and experience. Some PTs treat specific groups (pediatrics, geriatrics, sports, women’s health, etc) or practice in specific settings (home health, outpatient, etc)
- If your physician refers you for physical therapy to be provided in the physician’s office, or to a facility in which the physician has a financial interest, know that you are not obligated to receive physical therapy in any specific facility.
Our wonderful Wyoming outdoors are calling—talk to your PT so you can get moving and enjoy the summer!
Fremont Therapy and Rocky Mountain are here to help you solve your mobility issues. Call for a free consult today!