Direct Access Physical Therapy

Direct access to physical therapy in missouri

Did you know that you don’t need to visit a doctor before visiting a physical therapist for treatment? While it’s true that doctors often recommend that their patients treat their pain and injuries with physical therapy, you also have the option to visit a physical therapist without going through a doctor first. This is all thanks to the Direct Access policy.

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What is Direct Access?

As of January 1, 2015, Direct Access policies have been implemented by all U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These policies allow you to receive specific levels of treatment from a physical therapist without needing a physician’s referral. The services available without a physician’s referral vary from state to state.

In August 2023, a new law came into force in Missouri, granting residents the freedom to seek physical therapy without a physician’s referral. This marked a significant milestone as Missouri residents can now select their physical therapist directly, without the requirement of a doctor’s referral for the first time.

Why is Direct Access important?

Direct Access gives you more control over your healthcare and allows you to seek treatment for pain and injuries in a timely manner. This means that you no longer have to wait weeks or even months for a doctor’s appointment before receiving necessary therapy. With Direct Access, you can go directly to a physical therapist who can assess and treat your condition, saving you both time and money.

In addition, receiving early intervention through physical therapy can significantly improve outcomes for many conditions. Research indicates that having direct access to physical therapy, as opposed to waiting for physician referrals, can lead to cost savings averaging $150, along with cutting down appointment times by an average of three hours.

The Benefits of Direct Access

Direct Access offers several advantages that include:

  • Streamlined Treatment Process: With Direct Access, you can receive necessary treatment without waiting for a physician’s referral. This means less time in pain and more time dedicated to your recovery.
  • Safe and Expert Care: There is a common misconception that physical therapists lack the ability to diagnose conditions. However, this is far from the truth. Physical therapists undergo extensive training to accurately diagnose conditions and create personalized treatment plans. Their expertise guarantees that you receive safe and effective care. It is important to note that physical therapists have a low malpractice rate, and states with Direct Access policies haven’t experienced an increase in malpractice suits compared to states without strict regulations.
  • Cost Savings: Direct Access eliminates the need for extra visits to the physician, which saves you money and reduces overall healthcare expenses. It’s a convenient way to get the care you need without any additional costs.
  • Reduced Dependency on Medication: Physicians may initially prescribe or recommend pain medication before referring you to a physical therapist. However, this approach can have its drawbacks. Pain medications come with the risk of addiction and unwanted side effects that can hinder your recovery. Opting for physical therapy to manage and treat your pain can be a better choice. It promotes faster recovery without the risk of addiction or harmful side effects.

Schedule an Appointment with Excel Sports Physical Therapy Today

Excel Sports Physical Therapy provides Direct Access care to patients in Missouri. Our highly trained team specializes in diagnosing your pain and developing personalized treatment plans to help you achieve your recovery goals.

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Our treatments focus on reducing and preventing pain through methods like:

  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Gentle stretches
  • Joint mobilization
  • Soft tissue mobilization
  • Posture guidance
  • Patient education and more

Exercise your right to Direct Access and start your treatment journey today. Request an appointment with our physical therapists at Excel Sports Physical Therapy for pain relief, enhanced mobility and overall well-being.

If you are ready to exercise your right to Direct Access and start your treatment journey today, our physical therapists at Excel Sports Physical Therapy are ready to help. Contact us today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.