Choosing the Right Therapist

Finding the right therapy provider is an important, but difficult, decision. There are numerous physical therapy practices from which to choose. Unfortunately, most people have probably never experienced physical therapy and don't know the right questions to ask to compare practices. Because of this, many people choose their therapy provider based on proximity. This can be a big mistake as there are large differences between therapy providers. When you're dealing with your health, you need to make sure you receive the best care possible. Below, you will find several questions that should be asked before initiating therapy.

How long will I spend with the licensed physical therapist on the initial visit? The initial physical therapy visit should be one hour in duration.

How much time will I spend each visit with the licensed physical therapist? You should expect to see the physical therapist one-on-one for 30 minutes to one hour every visit.

What is the physical therapy aide to patient ratio? Physical therapy aides will often assist patients with their exercise programs. Many facilities will have their aides supervise two to four patients at a time. Higher quality facilities will have one to two patients per aide.

Will I be working with a physical therapist, a physical therapy assistant or an aide? Many physical therapy providers attempt to substitute quality professional care provided by a licensed physical therapist with that of less educated, or even uneducated, staff. If your primary treatment is being provided by someone other than a physical therapist, you may not be experiencing good quality physical therapy. The education levels of personnel that you are likely to encounter in physical therapy are as follows: most physical therapists possess a Masters or doctorate degree, physical therapy assistants possess a two year degree and physical therapy aides need have no formal education.

Will I always see the same physical therapist each visit? You should expect to see the same provider every visit.

Is the facility adequately equipped to deal with my particular problem? A good facility will have a complete line of exercise equipment, high tech electrical equipment and specialty devices to deal with varied patient problems. Ask if the facility has therapists that specialize in your particular problem.

How much time and what percentage of my treatment will be spent with the physical therapy aide? A physical therapy aide typically has no formal education and should be utilized only in a support staff role. Aides can be utilized to supervise exercise programs and help set patients up for electrical procedures. Many facilities, however, utilize their aides to provide the majority of the physical therapy treatment. Legally, aides are not allowed to perform any hands-on treatment. Unfortunately, many facilities utilize their aides in a hands-on capacity.

 

 

Physical therapy should always be physical. If the therapist is not providing hands-on care then you are not receiving good care.

At Fast Track Fitness and Physical Therapy, we provide the highest level of care and always provide care consistent with the above listed questions.