Do I need a referral from a physician to receive physical therapy in your office?
Maybe, Maybe not. Legally a physical therapist is able to treat individuals using what is called “direct access” for 30 days under Florida Law. So to answer the question literally, a referral from a physician is not necessary to come to our office. However, it is up to your insurance to tell us if they will pay for your treatment without a physician referral. So even though you can legally receive treatment from our office, you may not be covered and have to pay out of pocket. In order to avoid unexpected out of pocket expenses, we call your insurance company on your behalf to make sure that we fully disclose coverage benefits prior to the first session. Many insurance companies now recognize the cost savings and improved access to care that come with direct access and do not require a referral for payment. Our therapists routinely examine individuals under direct access and make appropriate recommendations when they identify something during the examination that needs physician intervention. The law does require that after 30 days, if the patient needs continued physical therapy intervention, the patient must be evaluated by a physician in order to verify correct treatment intervention and diagnosis. For the aforementioned reasons, it is routine procedure for us to call the insurance company on your behalf and verify if a referral is necessary for every patient that is referred to our office.