In my last column, I introduced you to the concept of Transitions Physical Therapy being a neuromechanical PT specialist clinic. So, the inevitable questions of what does that mean for your healthcare, why is it better, and where is the proof arise. Research shows a clear advantage to the utilization of a physical therapy specialist in three major areas,
Expertise Cost Savings Reduced Visits.
In this article, let’s address the first question, what does it mean for you and your family? The answer is Expertise. PT specialist have been shown to be as accurate or better at addressing musculoskeletal conditions then most general practitioners. This means more accurate identification of the patho-mechanics, sooner intervention, sooner identification imaging needs, and increased proactive care.
· A study by John D. Childs, published in 2005, found that experienced physical therapists had higher levels of knowledge, in managing musculoskeletal conditions, than medical professionals except orthopedist, whom they were equal to.
· In a 2005 study by Moore et al, Physical Therapist and Orthopedic doctors showed higher accuracy of referrals for diagnostic imaging than that of general practitioners.
· According to a 2006 study by Jette et al, PT specialist were almost twice as likely to make correct decisions for critical medical and musculoskeletal conditions compared with general physical therapist.
In no way should PT be a substitute for your general practitioner, but when it comes to musculoskeletal conditions, PT is probably the most proven yet underutilized healthcare service out there. Look for our next column, where we will look at the research that shows the medical cost savings of choosing a PT specialist.