by Apple Therapy

No Referral? No Problem:
Direct Access FAQs

If you’ve been delaying making an appointment with our providers due to a lack of referral, direct access may be the solution for you. Direct access allows patients to “self-refer” physical therapy without a prescription from a physician.

How does it work?

If you are interested in direct access to physical therapy and looking to use your health insurance to help cover the costs, it’s important to understand your insurance policy. If your health insurance is a preferred provider organization plan (PPO), you may be allowed to self-refer. Coverage of expenses will vary depending on if the provider you choose is on the list of preferred providers for your insurance policy. If your insurance is a point-of-service plan (POS) or health maintenance organization (HMO), you’ll likely need a referral for the insurance to cover expenses.

What are the benefits?

Patient autonomy:
Patients are able to make the decision to refer themselves to physical therapy if they choose to. This means you can choose who you want and when you want to start based on your personal needs and goals.

Scheduling appointments for a referral and then waiting to coordinate care with the physical therapist can prolong to process of starting physical therapy. Your time may also be prolonged if your physician wants to try other treatments before referring. Direct access is a safe and effective way to begin therapeutic exercise with a physical therapist who specializes in managing musculoskeletal conditions.

Direct access may be less costly than paying for a doctor’s appointment for a referral, imaging, etc. before starting physical therapy.

There some exemptions to direct access, which includes but not limited to: workers compensation, liability cases, and Medicare plans. If you have further questions or would like to know if you are eligible for direct access, contact us by clicking the button below.