Dr. Meredith Warner Helps to Pass Access To Physical Therapy Bill in Louisiana
This past June, The Louisiana Physical Therapy Association awarded local, board-certified orthopedic surgeon Meredith Warner, the highly distinguished honor of The Friends of PT Award for the Access to physical therapy initiative. This award is given to those who have made conscious and significant contributions to the overall profession of physical therapy in the state of Louisiana.
Dr. Warner was a part of the recently passed the HB 623 bill, #Access2PT, which allows for patients to be treated directly from their chosen physical therapist instead of being referred to one after being seen by their primary care physician. In order for this bill to be passed, number of signatures had to be collected in order to make this bill a law with the Louisiana Legislature.
Why Does it Matter?
Direct Access To Physical Therapy Law has many benefits for the healthcare community. Some on them include:
- Timely Access For Patients
The passed bill allows for patents who are in need of physical therapy to be diagnosed and treated much faster than the previously setup protocol. Patients will no longer have to be seen by their primary care physician and then be referred to a physical therapist.
- Lower Healthcare Costs
The #Access2PT bill also lowers the cost of patient care which benefits all parties involved. Before, patients would have to pay their standard copay for their primary care physician in addition to the other copays and medical fees associated their physical therapy.
- More Targeted & Safe Patients For Care
This passed bill will allow patients to be treated more specifically for their health problems. Dr. Warner volunteered to testify on behalf of physical therapists by referring to actual patients that have benefited from direct access. She helped to prove that physical therapists were able to assess the patient’s physical situation more accurately in many situations and provide better care. She also presented cases studies where misdiagnosed issues by general physicians were discovered and corrected by physical therapists. She reinforced the concept that direct access to physical therapy is safe and effective for all parties involved.