Direct Access… What is it? And why would I care about it?Put simply, Direct Access allows physical therapists to treat patients without a doctors prescription.
Yes…you heard correctly!
In the state of Massachusetts we have something known as unrestricted Direct Access, which makes physical therapy the first-line treatment option and no need to involve your doctor unless it is warranted.
Ok so I don’t need a prescription from my doctor to see a physical therapist in the state of MA, but how else can I benefit from getting PT first?
Direct Access Is Overall Better For The Patient!!We as physical therapists have the proper training to treat Direct Access patients and can refer to other providers when a diagnosis may be beyond our scope of practice.
Physical therapy is also a safer option than prescription medications, which will often be used to treat the symptoms of pain when seen by a physician. At physical therapy our medicine is movement and will not only be more effective at reducing a patient’s pain, but also treating the root cause of their problem.
When there are requirements for a patient to acquire an MD referral, there is more financial burden on the patient. There is already a financial responsibility for the patient to receive physical therapy services, so reducing the unnecessary office visit to your physician will be more cost effective in your care.
Did you know that patients who saw a physical therapist first in an unrestricted Direct Access state had 13% lower costs at 30 days and 32% lower costs at 90 days?So not only will Direct Access reduce your overall healthcare costs, but will result in fewer overall treatment sessions. Let me sum it up for ya…You will save money and get better faster!
Imagine just being able to walk into a physical therapy facility where you can just get treated and not have to worry about the B.S. Well, that is the best part about Direct Access and our model for physical therapy here at ProForm PT. Just because we have Direct Access (as a profession) in Massachusetts does not mean that you may not need a referral…if your facility is in network with insurance. Believe it or not some insurance companies still require a referral WTF !!
As we are an out-of-network practice in a state that has unrestricted Direct Access you will get the best of both worlds. You do not need to worry about a referral from your doctor or authorization from your insurance.