A Blog Post Encouraging PTs to Broaden their Reach:
“Running a successful practice can be challenging—especially given the current payment climate. Add in the potential pitfalls of making a bad hire and the staggeringly high percentage of patients who drop out of therapy before completing their course of care, and you have a veritable minefield to traverse. So, don’t make it harder than it has to be by convincing yourself (or your staff) that you can’t take direct access patients in your state. As it stands, there aren’t even any states without direct access to physical therapy—because every state allows patients to receive at least an initial evaluation from a qualified PT before they must obtain a physician referral to continue treatment.
And that’s all you need to step into your role as a primary care coordinator. So, up your marketing game to include prospective patients; then, use your clinical expertise to help direct those patients to the type of treatment that is the most likely to benefit their condition or injury. If it’s physical therapy, great! You can send patients to a PT-friendly physician for a referral that allows you to move forward with treatment (if you’re not in a state that allows unrestricted direct access to physical therapy). And if it’s not physical therapy, then you can refer the patient to a provider who would be a better fit (with the added bonus of strengthening your network). Either way, you get to the be the one ensuring that the patient receives the very best treatment—and maybe (just maybe) that patient will explore a solution other than surgery, injections, or pain meds...”