"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, July 31, 2012

The Surprising Truth About Healthcare Fraud

Thanks to Peter Kim at InsuranceQuotes.org
what healthcare fraud is costing you

British Physical Therapists Gain Prescribing Rights

"This is a truly historic day..."
The 51,000 British physical therapists (physiotherapists) can now become trained to independently prescribe medications to their patients.

They are the world's first physical therapists to be granted drug prescribing rights within their health care systems without needing a physician to sign the prescription.

"Once suitably trained, physiotherapists in the United Kingdom will be the first in the world to be able to independently prescribe medicines where clinically appropriate,such as painkillers and anti-inflammatories", said Earl Howe, the British Department of Health’s Under Secretary for Quality.
The decision would reduce a layer of bureaucracy and an unnecessary burden on doctors who have, until now, had to counter-sign prescriptions drawn up by physiotherapists who have been "supplementary prescribers" since 2006.

The response from the British medical profession has been overwhelmingly positive.

British physical therapists fought for 10 years to gain independent prescription rights.

I would like to see the same changes take place in the United States of America, however, I am doubtful that the American medical establishment would be as supportive of physical therapists as the British physicians seem to be.

Evidence that increased competition (possibly from physical therapists) drives down prices and increases quality of American healthcare would only be seen as reducing physician income.

Fear of lower physician salaries would draw political opposition from the American Medical Association.

Presumably, Great Britain's "administered price system" (similar to Medicare) is what allows physicians to support physical therapist prescription rights.

What do you think?

Friday, July 20, 2012

Marcus Welby is Dead

"It's the death knoll of the private practice..." said Kurt Mosley, vice president of strategic lliances for Merritt Hawkins and Staff Care, a nationwide healthcare staffing organization.
"...I think... nobody wants Marcus Welby any more."
"That concept doesn’t play anymore and it’s not effective."
Recruitment of physicians into private practice is now only 1% of all physician recruitment activities.

"It’s not necessarily that surprising, but it dropped so dramatically (this year)."
This article from Healthcare Finance News sources Mosley's statement and provides additional links to explore these changes in physician recruitment.

Marcus Welby, MD was a television show about a gentle family physician in a private practice in Santa Monica, California. The TV show ran from 1969 to 1976. The 1970 season was the very first #1 hit show for ABC networks.

Marcus Welby, MD delt with sensitive medical issues, such as depression, brain damage, breast cancer, sexually transmitted diseases, epilepsy, leukemia and Alzheimer's Disease.

How Do Physician Employment Trends Impact Outpatient Physical Therapists?

Fundamentally, physical therapists' practice and physicians' practice are different.

Physicians require access to sophisticated testing, technology and the resources of the acute care hospital to practice effectively in these medern times.

Physical therapists may also need access to hospitals, but to a lesser extent than physicians (which helps explain why physical therapists are not included in Meaningful Use incentive payments for providers who purchase Electronic Medical Records and achieve interoperability with hospitals).

This American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) letter to the American Medical Association (AMA) nails the point, exactly:
"Doctors of physical therapy are not medical doctors, and medical doctors are not doctors of physical therapy.
Physical therapy is not a subspecialty of the medical profession.
Physical therapists provide a unique but complimentary service that physicians are untrained to provide."
Trends affecting medical doctors could buffet private practice physical therapists but seem unlikely to put the nail in the coffin of private practice physical therapists the way some are predicting for medical doctors.

I think the future is bright for private practice physical therapists. Its not a future like those who went before us, like Marcus Welby.

It could be better.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

How to Tell Your Patient Their MRI is Unneccesary

Thanks to EIM faculty member Dr. Jason R. Rodeghero for this fun, thought-provoking video.

Physical therapists can educate their patients on the potential harm from excessive MRI imaging (and x-ray imaging).

I'm still amazed when I talk to my peers who accept "what the doctor ordered" just because the physician ordered it.

Physical therapy is a doctoring profession because we accept responsibility for our patients.

That includes pointing out to them when we believe unnecessary testing could harm them.

Monday, July 16, 2012

How to Open a Private Practice in line with APTA's Vision 2020

Intended for Physical Therapists new to Private Practice!

This course presents an introduction for healthcare professionals looking to open a private practice for the first time.

Specifically, this course will review reasons for opening a private practice, how to assess the market to determine potential success. This course will also review financing options, as well as how to monitor success by identifying critical metrics specific to your practice setting.

This course will expose the participant in how to develop a marketing plan.

Lastly, this course will review appropriate billing practices and how to document medical necessity and skilled Physical Therapy need to insure prompt and correct payments to facilitate on going cash flow to run your business.

Friday September 14th from 8am to 12pm at the FPTA Annual conference in Orlando.

Sign up here!
  • Adam C. Geril, PT, DPT, MS, OCS, ATC
  • Tim Richardson, PT
  • Adam Woods, VP Alarion Bank

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Florida Physical Therapists Wanted to Speak to Legislators

The Key Contacts program of the Florida Physical Therapy Association (FPTA) is designed to put a physical therapist (PT) or physical therapist assistant (PTA) in every state legislator's office in Florida.

Each Florida legislator has an office in your district. Maybe your legislator has an office in your town.

We especially need therapists in the South Florida area.

The goal is to make politics personal so when the FPTA has an issue that needs support - such as the recently successful Temporary Licensure law - then we can reach out to the legislator.

But we need you to make that face-to-face contact.

The Florida Physical Therapy Association will be making strategic contributions to several legislators in anticipation of the 2013 legislative cycle.

You can set up a Practice Visit to meet you, your staff and your patients.

The FPTA may want to suport your legislator using FPTA Political Action Committee (PAC) funds.

Find out if your legislator in on the list by e-mailing Eric Chaconas, DPT.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Physical Therapists Learn from the Best in the Business

Physical therapists learning from each other - that's what we've always done.

The 2012 Florida Physical Therapists in Private Practice (FLPTPP) Meeting is August 17th to 19th, 2012 in Orlando, Florida.

Armin Loges, PT and crew have lined up a dynamite cast of presenters for you.
Florida Physical Therapists in Private Practice 2012 Annual Meeting
Pick the educational courses that you need this year - all come with CME credits!

Saturday, August 18th (morning)Medicare ComplianceNancy Beckley, MS, MBA, CHC
Saturday, August 18th (morning)Pelvic Floor DysfunctionTricia Trinque, MHE, PT
Saturday, August 18th (morning)Dry NeedlingBrian Ruchin, PT, DPT
Saturday, August 18th (afternoon) Marketing Your PT PracticeNitin Chhoda, DPT
Saturday, August 18th (afternoon)Cervical Thrust ManipulationJames Dunning, FAAOMPT, MMACP
Saturday, August 18th (afternoon)Business 101 for Physical TherapistsDick Hillyer, DPT, MBA, MSM
Saturday, August 18th (afternoon)Innovation in Physical TherapyMatthew Harkness, MPT, MTC, TATC, CEAS
Sunday, August 19th (morning)New Florida PIP lawDick Hillyer, DPT, MBA
Sunday, August 19th (morning)Red Flags for Cervical InstabilityEric Douglass, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT
Sunday, August 19th (morning)Legal Implications for Physical TherapistsMichael Magidson, Esq.
Sunday, August 19th (morning)AcupunctureIrene Hujsa, PT, OCS and Julietta Planchart, PT, CNS
Sunday, August 19th (afternoon)DME and PTPPTimothy Beury

Last year's conference was important just because of the energy in the room and the excitement it generated (as well as the MANY new members of the FLPTPP that joined!)

This year's conference promises to be MUCH bigger, MUCH better and MUCH more exciting.

We'll see you there!

Sign up here!

Free Tutorial

Get free stuff at BulletproofPT.com

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"

Copyright 2007-2010 by Tim Richardson, PT.
No reproduction without authorization.

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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.