It's Your Right to Access Physical Therapists Directly in Indiana
Did you know that in 48 states, patients can access their physical therapist without a referral from their physician. Current law in Indiana prohibits you from directly accessing your physical therapist for treatment which increases health care costs and delays access to Physical Therapy care.
Indiana consumers seeking safe, effective alternatives to prescription medication and surgery are choosing Physical Therapy for the prevention and treatment of conditions affecting movement and function, only to find arbitrary, unnecessary, and costly barriers. Click here to find the objectives of direct access legislation.
Currently, 30% of Indiana's 92 counties are designated as Medically Underserved areas (Indiana State Department of Health) and by 2015, Indiana will face a shortage of 2000 physicians (Bowen Research Center). This shortage will increase the uncessary wait time patients face to access their physical therapist. Here are examples of other states, hospital networks, and companies who have incorporated early Physical Therapy Access to solve this problem.
Additionally, specialties other than physicians including podiatrists, psychologists, dentists, and chiropractors, are all allowed to determine if a patient needs physical therapy. Thus, the Indiana legislature has already determined that physician training is not needed to determine if physical therapy is appropriate for a patient.
Physical Therapists are more qualified and educated than other professions, including massage therapists, exercise physiologists, and personal trainers, who currently do not require a physician referral or may not hold an Indiana professional license. It is time to allow Hoosiers direct access to physical therapists so they can benefit from the real cost savings associated with the conservative management of movement and function-related conditions.