Quality Matters in Physical Therapy, Here’s Why.

Also published at www.pagingpatch.com.

As with most types of health care, quality matters in physical therapy. Many first-time physical therapy patients do not understand that there is a vast range of the type and quality of care provided to patients at different physical therapy clinics, and not all physical therapy is the same. Far from it.

High-quality physical therapy encompasses personalized care, empathetic physical therapists who not only communicate but also educate, and continuous patient improvement.

But why does quality really matter in physical therapy?

Dr. Karena Wu PT, DPT, OCS, COMT, CSCS, CKTP. CPI, owner of ActiveCare Physical Therapy in NYC and Mumbai states that high-quality care “can be the difference between a 100% recovery versus a 90% recovery. It can affect how quickly one progresses and how much resolution or change one can achieve in one session and over the course of sessions.”

Here are some additional reasons why high-quality care should be your first concern:

1. Save Money and Time by Needing Less Visits

Quality wins over quantity when it comes to physical therapy. Seeing a physical therapist two to three times per week, does not guarantee that you will experience faster recovery or have better functional outcomes.

“When a physical therapist is providing quality care, a patient will make much more significant improvements in a shorter time period, negating the need for tons and tons of visits to a clinic” says Meredith Castin PT, DPT, co-founder of NewGradPhysicalTherapy and the founder of The Non-Clinical PT

It is possible that one high-quality, personalized visit a week or every other week is all that you need to recover to your full potential (of course this depends on your condition and goals). Less visits each week, means significantly less money in co-pays and less time taken of your busy life.

2. Achieve Better Improvement and Quality of Life

Many physical therapists focus on helping your pain or injury improve to where you were prior to the start of your condition, which is great, but what if a physical therapist could actually help you move and perform even better than you did before?

A high-quality physical therapist may be able to do just that. Kristen Wilson PT, DPT, GCS, owner of Action Potential, explains “a high quality physical therapist can increase level of improvement, returning the patient to a higher performance level or to more functional independence.”

Physical therapists are also capable of doing more than just rehabbing injuries or reducing pain. High quality physical therapists can create personalized plans to help you reduce likelihood of injury and improve your athletic performance and quality of life.

3. Receive Personalized Care

Everyone is different and has unique circumstances and goals. Your physical therapy should also be unique and personalized. If you are trying to run a marathon, why would you be on the same recovery plan as someone who wants to walk a mile?

High-quality physical therapists will provide a personalized program taking into account a patient’s preferences and conditions. Patients should be “given individual attention at every visit, through manual applications or patient education on an advancing home exercise program,” says Jason Barone PT, DPT, Regional Clinical Director in Connecticut for Professional Physical Therapy.

How to Find High-Quality Care? Cash-Based Physical Therapy May be Your Best Option.

Insurance companies are paying less for physical therapy visits, which has a rippling effect on care quality. Physical therapists are often double, or triple booked, only spending 10–15 minutes with each patient, and they therefore struggle to provide the highest quality care.

“The corporate model for the large companies [can be] all about quantity,” Jason Kart PT, DPT, CMPT, owner of Core Physical Therapy explains. Sometimes, Kart says, physical therapists are so concerned with overhead expenses that they don’t put as much focus on the patient.

“This is part of the reason why cash-based physical therapy practices are becoming more prolific,” says Castin. She suggests, cash-based clinics and services “enable clinicians to spend longer with patients, [meaning] patients’ symptoms improve much more quickly with fewer visits required.

Castin urges patients to consider quality when selecting a physical therapist, “Quality should be any patient’s number one consideration. If a patient is seeing a sub-par clinician, no matter how many visits that patient attends, the results still will not compare to what they’d see from working with a high-quality clinician.”

Looking for a simple way to access convenient high-quality physical therapy?

Check out Patch. Patch lets you book a vetted physical therapist to your home or office in under 48 hours, providing clients with quick, convenient access to high-quality personalized care. Visit www.pagingpatch.com to book a visit today.