Six Reasons Why Physical Therapy At Home is More Effective


People Are Choosing Concierge Healthcare to Save Time & Money

Now, more than ever, we have almost limitless options when it comes to services that simplify our lives. With the touch of a button you can order groceries, coordinate carpools, or have your medications delivered to your doorstep. Just as easily you can also access healthcare. Concierge, or mobile healthcare services, are services provided by a clinician in your own home. House calls are not only limited to physicians - Physical Therapists are becoming part of this modern trend.

1. Concierge Physical Therapy is not exclusive or expensive. Many concierge physical therapists are in network with insurances or participate with Medicare. We are therapists, just like the ones in the clinic you would drive to — we simply chose not to have a brick-and-mortar location. This means that you can have therapy for the same cost of attending therapy at a clinic but in the privacy and convenience of your own home. I even know of a few mobile therapists who visit their patients at work, treating them on their lunch breaks.

I’ve had people ask me, “but what about the equipment?” Believe it or not, we can and do bring everything you need to the home. That list includes vestibular infrared googles, massage tables, portable ellipticals, bikes, balance discs, e-stim devices, bands, weights — you name it. In fact the only item I can think of that a brick and mortar clinic has that we don’t is an ultrasound machine, and current research has debunked their efficacy (that’s science talk for they don’t really work).

2. You don’t waste time traveling. Many of our patients are retired, are home raising children, or they work from home. Their time is precious to them and they don’t want to waste it traveling, parking, and waiting for their appointment. Having a therapist come to your home provides exceptional time-savings; you can spend your precious hours or using that time wisely, as you wait for your therapist to arrive.

3. You can expect fewer missed visits which means better outcomes. The number one reason for patient no-shows in outpatient physical therapy is forgetting. The second reason is illness. Neither of these two issues apply to concierge PT. Your therapist will confirm your appointment and show up. And, if you’re feeling under the weather he or she can still come and provide your session, modifying the intensity of the program as needed (or even assessing you and reporting back to the MD). Most concierge practices are privately-owned and studies show that private practice PT have the lowest rates for missed and cancelled visits (and better customer service!). Fewer missed visits means improved compliance and improved compliance means better outcomes. To put it simply, if you get the therapy you need, you will get better faster.

4. You don’t have to pay for parking, gas, Uber, or Lyft. Transportation costs are eliminated with concierge physical therapy. If you are unable to drive due to pain, disability, or pain medications, concierge PT is a wonderful solution to coordinating transportation. You no longer have the worry, stress, or expense of trying to coordinate your transportation to therapy. And, even if you are able to drive, being treated at home saves you the risk of driving, the cost of gas, and for some, the cost of parking.

Worried about concierge fees? Don’t be. Nearly every mobile therapist I know does not charge a travel fee, they simply have a list of zip codes they service — you either are or aren’t in the service area. And, did you know that its against the law for a medicare beneficiaries to be charged a travel fee?

5. You don’t need to hire a caregiver. Some of our patients are the primary caregiver for their child, spouse, or parent. Coordinating the care of your children or other family member while attending therapy can be time-consuming and expensive. In fact, I believe many caregivers are reluctant to take care of their own needs because coordinating their “replacement” can be fraught with anxiety or impossibility. I have had plenty of patients seek PT at home at times coordinated with their loved one or child’s nap time. This insures that they get the care they need, without having to worry if their loved one is in good hands.

6. Your therapist is more involved. Home visits mean that every patient gets one-on-one care. Unlike in clinics, you don’t have to compete with other patients, staff, doorbells, or phone calls. Its not that the brick-and-mortar therapists want to be distracted, its just unavoidable for the larger high-volume clinics. At home, you get all of your therapist’s attention, which means you’ll get a more thorough examination and improved quality care. For this reason, above all others, I believe your physical therapy experience will be more enjoyable, and more effective. Home visits will help get you better faster, and save you time and money in the process.

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Dr. Anna Stromquist, PT, DPT is a physical therapist in Atlanta, Georgia. Her mobile clinic provides physical and speech therapy in the home under outpatient benefits.

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