In January of 2015, the state of Michigan passed the direct access law for physical therapy. This means that an individual can seek skilled physical therapy services without the need for a written therapy order by a physician. The amount of time a physical therapist is allowed to treat a patient without a physician’s order is 21 days or 10 treatments whichever comes first. If the physical therapist recommends additional treatment beyond this time limit or if additional evaluation is required, the individual must then seek medical advice from a physician.

This is great news for the individual who “twists” their ankle or “tweaks” a muscle. They can see a physical therapist for evaluation and treatment!

THIS IS GREAT NEWS PROVIDED YOUR INSURANCE COVERS PHYSICAL THERAPY SERVICES WITHOUT THE NEED FOR A PHYSICIAN’S ORDER.

When in doubt, CALL YOUR INSURANCE company/representative to determine if this will be a covered benefit. Even if your insurance does not cover direct access, you still may see a physical therapist for the above time limit and pay for the skilled services out of pocket however.

At this time, Priority Health is the only insurance that participates with Michigan’s Direct Access law.

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