Physicians who refer their patients to us do so with confidence knowing the patient will receive individual attention and state-of-the-art care. To refer your patient for treatment at Wayne Physical Therapy & Spine Center, please have your patient call, fax us a referral or if you prefer please download and complete the Referral for Therapy form and either email it to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax it to (973) 839-7293.
Physician Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some Frequently Asked Questions from our referring physicians.
How long after I refer a patient must my patient wait to be seen in physical therapy?
In most cases patients are scheduled within 2 days of calling. On an emergency basis, we will see the patient that day. Unfortunately, with today’s managed care, some insurance companies don’t allow scheduling this quickly due to pre-certification requirements. Please call us if there is any question.
How do I refer a patient to physical therapy?
Referring a patient to physical therapy is easy. Although a prescription has not been required in NJ for physical therapy since 2003, some insurance companies still request one. Therefore you can give your patient a prescription for physical therapy with the diagnosis (if known) and write “evaluate and treat for physical therapy” on it. In the alternative you may send your patient without a prescription and we will send one for your signature if required by their insurance. In any case, we will send you a full report with our findings.
Again, with managed care, we make every effort to take care of all insurance and pre-certification requirements. Unfortunately some insurance companies require the physician to provide an insurance referral and or prescription before the patient can start therapy. Feel free to call with specific questions and we will get the answer for you.
What other information would be helpful to the physical therapist on the referral?
Other than a clinical diagnosis if known, the only other information we need is:
- Weight bearing restrictions for post-surgical and post-fracture patients
- Fracture status
- ROM restrictions for post-surgical patients
- Degrees of resistance allowed for post-surgical patient (e.g., active, passive or resisted)
- Expected limits in ROM if any, for a final outcome on a post-surgical patient
- Type of surgical procedure and/or type of internal fixation used
- Specific requests for splints or braces
Do you need operative, MRI, or X-ray reports?
As physical therapists, we work very closely with your patients to allow gradual stress on a surgical site. Operative reports, X-rays and/or MRI reports are always helpful, but are not absolutely necessary. Any vital information can be written directly on the referral as outlined in the previous question.
How do I know what frequency and duration to refer my patient for?
In general, most patients are seen three times weekly initially with decreasing frequency as tolerated. In most cases it is best to leave specific duration and frequency up to the physical therapist. This way the patient isn’t set up with false expectations and the therapist has the leeway to:
- See a patient on a frequent basis for an acute or severe problem.
- Decrease treatment frequency as the patient progresses.
- Spread out visits if less frequent visits are needed, either clinically and/or due to insurance authorization.
How will I know how my patient is progressing?
The therapist will send you a full written report on your patient after seeing the patient. Information will include history, objective findings, assessment, type of treatment and treatment frequency.
The patient will be periodically re-evaluated and updated reports will be sent. Frequency of reports will depend upon the chronicity and nature of the problem but are generally sent every 4 weeks. Re-evaluations and reports will also be sent prior to any follow-up visit you have scheduled with the patient. If you would like reports or updates more frequently and/or verbally, please call or write it on your referral.
In general, our reports are faxed so that they are there on a timely basis. We make every effort to get the follow up date from the patient and send timely reports. The date and time of the patient’s follow up with you will be noted on the transmission sheet when the fax is sent. This hopefully will alert your office staff to be sure you see the report prior to the patients visit.
If I am not sure that you can help my patient, can I refer for a consultation?
Absolutely! Simply tell your patient you would like them to be seen by a physical therapist to see if physical therapy would be helpful. We will evaluate the patient and call you or send a report, as you prefer. You can also, feel free to call us first for general information and treatment options for an individual patient or for more general information on various diagnoses or types of problems.
How do I know what kind of treatment I should suggest?
Because of our experience and level of expertise, you need not make specific requests when sending a patient. You can explain to your patient that the physical therapist will evaluate them and identify any problems that can be addressed in physical therapy such as pain, weakness, loss of motion, loss of function, gait problems, etc.
The therapist will explain all aspects of treatment to the patient and will send you a report with an outline of their care. This way, the patient doesn’t have a false expectation for physical therapy and the best treatment options can be utilized. As always, any specific requests you make will be incorporated in the patient’s program if appropriate.
How early after a diagnosis is made should I send a patient for physical therapy?
The patient should be seen as early as possible. The earlier a patient is seen, the quicker their recovery and the shorter the overall duration of their care. Treatment will be modified according to the stage of the injury (i.e., acute, subacute, chronic) and the patients signs and symptoms, therefore “too early” is generally not a problem.
Why Wayne Physical Therapy & Spine Center?
Choose Wayne Physical Therapy & Spine Center for your patients because, if you had an injury that is where you would want to receive physical therapy. Physicians, physicians’ families and physicians’ office staff frequently use our services. Being a health care provider, that should speak volumes.
- You want a therapist who knows the difference between bursitis and tendonitis, a first and a third degree sprain, an intervertebral disc problem and stenosis.
- You want a therapist who is up to date on the newest research and treatment approaches.
- You want a therapist who will go the extra mile to take the patient from functional to fully functional and pain free.
- You want someone to teach prevention and recurrence.
- You want someone who cares.
What other specialty services do you offer?
The McKenzie Method
Since the majority of spinal problems are mechanical, related to specific activities, postures and habits in the patient’s life style, a mechanical solution is required. Staffed with experts in spinal care with post-graduate training in the McKenzie method, a thorough evaluation is performed to identify movements, positions, and activities that aggravate the condition as well as those that will decrease symptoms. Emphasis is on active self treatment in which the patient plays a vital role. The goal in our practice is not only to resolve the current problem, but to prevent recurrence so typical in spinal problems. Many facilities advertise the McKenzie Method when in actuality they are only partially trained. Our therapists are Credentialed which indicates a level of competence others do not have.
Functional Capacity Evaluations
Staff members are certified in the California Functional Capacity Protocol, an objective evaluation used to determine the patient’s readiness for work and other specific activities. It has been designed to be a safe, reliable, valid and practical test of lifting capacity and ability to return to work for patients with spine or extremity problems.
Work Hardening, Conditioning, and Work Simulation
As part of our overall treatment approach, patients who need to return to work have work conditioning and work simulation activities incorporated into their programs in addition to traditional exercise and therapies. If required or requested more extensive work hardening programs are developed. These programs simulate work requirements and activities with emphasis on functional repetitions in order to allow a smooth transition to a full work day.
The McConnell Approach
When appropriate, we will incorporate the McConnell Approach, especially for patellofemoral patients. The McConnell Approach involves evaluation of the specific joint with special consideration of joint tightness, muscle tightness, hyper mobility, alignment, and muscle ratios. After the evaluation is complete, the physical therapist will design a program that involves strengthening the weakened structures, stretching those that are tight, in combination with McConnell taping to temporarily realign the joint as these other more permanent factors are addressed. This is all done in combination with EMG biofeedback to correct muscle ratios, not just their strength. Muscle ratio imbalances combined with all the above often lead to poor results for patients either receiving other approaches or taping alone, without the other factors being considered. Additionally we have found high success in resolving these patients as we always evaluate and include proximal strengthening which is key in resolving patellofemoral issues yet often overlooked.