Frequently Asked Questions
- What ARE physical therapists and what do they do?
Physical therapists (PTs) are health care professionals who diagnose and treat people of all ages who have medical problems or other health-related conditions that limit their ability to move and perform activities of daily life.
PTs also help prevent conditions that limit a person's ability to move by developing fitness and wellness programs that achieve healthy and active lifestyles.
PTs examine individuals and develop plans of care using treatment techniques that promote the ability to move, reduce pain, restore function, and prevent disabilities. They provide care in hospitals, outpatient clinics, home health, nursing homes, schools, sports facilities, and more.
Care provided by a physical therapist will begin with an examination and clinical evaluation. The physical therapist will design an individualized plan of care which may include interventions such as therapeutic exercise; functional training in self-care and home management (including activities of daily living) and in community and work integration or reintegration; manual therapy, such as mobilization and manipulation; uses of devices and equipment, such as assistive, adaptive, orthotic, or prosthetic devices; electrotherapeutic modalities, physical agents, and mechanical modalities, such as ultrasound and electrical stimulation.
A PT must have a graduate degree from an accredited physical therapist education program before taking a national licensure examination from the state in which he or she practices. Physical therapists must have a minimum of a master's degree. Today most education programs offer the doctor of physical therapy degree. Please see your therapist resume which we have in the office. Foundation Physical Therapy employees 2 of the 16 Certified Manual Physical Therapist in Pinellas County.
- I should have an MRI or X-Ray done before I start physical therapy.
Incorrect! During the initial assessment, the physical therapist will screen for red flags that would warrant imaging studies. When indicated, the treating physician will be contacted to discuss any concerns. Therapy interventions will be based on physical limitations as loss of motion and tightness, not on a MRI! Diagnostic imaging can be used to test a hypothesis. When a patient does not respond favorably to the intervention provided (usually after four or five visits) the referring physician will be contacted, who would make the decision if imaging studies or other assessment tools will be indicated at that time.
I cannot recive physical therapy services because I would have to commit to three times a week for at least four weeks.
Incorrect! At Foundation, an individual program will be developed for you, with emphasis on empowerment. Follow up visits are to assess progress and modify (progress/change) your program. On average, we see people 8-12 times, by which time they reach their functional goals.
My insurance will not pay for physical therapy unless I have a referral from my doctor.
Incorrect! Florida is a direct axcess state which allows Physical Therapist to see a patient for 21 days without a physician referral. However, keep in mind that each insurance plan differs in coverage for physical therapy and their requirements for physican referral. Our office manager will assist you in determining if a physician referral is indicated.
When referred for physical therapy, I have to go to the facility recommended by my physician.
Incorrect! As long as your physician believes that you will benefit from physical therapy and recommends that, it is your choice to go to the facility that you prefer
Foundation Physical Therapy (727) 784-6088 Clearwater, Palm Harbor, Largo