Column: Expanding physical therapy common sense move


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Though it hasn’t made big headlines, a bill passed this spring by the General Assembly is a major step forward for Hoosiers who want more choice, greater efficiency and lower cost in their health care.

House Bill 1034, which became law July 1, gives Indiana residents direct access to physical therapy, meaning an individual can be evaluated by a physical therapist and receive up to 24 days of treatment without first obtaining a physician’s referral. The new provision also allows nurse practitioners and physician assistants to refer patients for physical therapy without the additional step of obtaining a physician’s approval.

Until now, Indiana was the only state that did not allow direct access to evaluations by physical therapists and one of only three states that did not allow even limited access to treatment without a referral.

 

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