"Physical therapy is not a subspecialty of the medical profession and physical therapists are not medical doctors; we are a separate profession that provides a unique service that physicians are unable and untrained to provide."

Letter to the AMA from the APTA, Dec 2009

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Regional interdependence may require a Physical Therapy Diagnosis

All physical therapists need to jump on this concept and get comfortable with treating 'the whole patient'.

The February Journal of Orthopedic and Sports Physical Therapy has this article...

Regional Interdependence: A Musculoskeletal Examination
Model Whose Time Has Come

This is a quote from the article...

'A best-practice model for managing patients with musculoskeletal complaints has yet to be identified.'

I disagree. The model exists but it has yet to be well-known. I have discussed the model extensively in this blog and further information is available at www.SimpleScore.com.

Further the authors go on to say the following...

"For example, do you routinely examine the hip region for impairments in patients you are treating for complaints of low back pain or knee pain? Likewise, are you examining the lumbar spine for impairments in patients with primary hip and knee complaints?"

As I noted in my last post, routine Physical Therapy Diagnosis will require many physical therapists to change long held, 'old school' practice patterns that allowed physical therapists to treat under a physician referral while abdicating decision-making authority to protocols, models or back to the physician.

Then, when we want that authority back, we find that others (chiropractors) have already taken the authority or that we never earned the authority.

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Tim Richardson, PT owns a private practice at Medical Arts Rehabilitation, Inc in Palmetto, Florida. The clinic website is at MedicalArtsRehab.com.

Bulletproof Expert Systems: Clinical Decision Support for Physical Therapists in the Outpatient Setting is a manager's workbook with stories, checklists, charts, graphs, tables, and templates describing how you can use paper-based or computerized tools to improve your clinic's Medicare compliance, process adherence and patient outcomes.

Tim has implemented a computerized Clinical Decision Support (CDS) system in his clinic since 2006 that serves as a Reminder, Alerting, Prompting and Predicting CDS using evidence-based tests and measures.

Tim can be reached at
TimRichPT@BulletproofPT.com .

"Make Decisions like Doctors"

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Consistent with the American Physical Therapy Association Vision Statement for Physical Therapy 2020, the American Physical Therapy Association supports exclusive physical therapist ownership and operation of physical therapy services.