3 Benefits of Direct Access | Blog

3 Benefits of Direct Access

  Posted: Dec 28, 2019


Imagine you have twisted your lower back while lifting groceries or working in the yard. The typical steps include visiting your physician and paying a copay, receiving prescription medications, and in some cases, your physician will refer you to physical therapy. However, from the time you get the referral, to the time you schedule the appointment, to the time of your first visit, several weeks could have passed. Research has shown that access to physical therapy within 14 days of onset of symptoms saves money (over 50% in back pain costs) and reduces the need for further health care.

​With Direct Access, patients can seek physical therapy immediately after injury without a referral or prescription.

​Direct Access benefits:

  1. It provides quick access to the care you need. Patients can be seen within 2-3 days of scheduling appointments and in some cases, the same day.
  2. It lowers overall cost by reducing the need for additional healthcare services. The sweet spot is within 14 days of the onset of symptoms for average reduction in costs of 50%. These decreased costs are attributed to fewer office visits, less prescription medications, decreased need for imaging, and in many cases avoiding surgery
  3. It has shown better outcomes and higher satisfaction.
We are not recommending you avoid your primary care physician, but when you know physical therapy is exactly what you need, it is best to schedule an appointment right away. Many insurance providers cover Direct Access, but a few providers, Medicare/Medicaid, and Federal programs will require a physician referral, before seeking treatment.

​For more information on how to get started and to schedule an appointment, call us at 210-490-4738.