Welcome to our Physician and Client FAQ section. The purpose this section is to answer some of the questions you might have and to give you an idea of the questions other Physicians and clients have asked. However, if you have a question of a more immediate need or personal nature, please feel free to contact us at (563) 288-6787. We’d be glad to help!
- What should I expect on my first visit?
- What types of interventions may I receive?
- How long will my visit last?
- How is my progress measured?
- Will I need follow-up or maintenance care?
- What if I need to return to physical therapy?
- Is it ok to ask my doctor about physical therapy?
- Will my insurance cover physical therapy?
- How do I arrange an appointment?
- What should I wear?
- What should I bring with me?
- What if I have an increase in symptoms?
- Who chooses which physical therapist I go to?
- What office policies should I be aware of?
- What is my responsibility in physical therapy?
- Why should I choose you?
What should I expect on my first visit?
On your first visit, your physical therapist will perform an examination/evaluation to determine what deficits and/or problems you have that can be addressed in physical or occupational therapy. The examination/evaluation involves a thorough history, a systems review, and tests and measures that allow the therapist to get a more specific understanding of your condition. Your therapist will make a clinical judgment as to your diagnosis and prognosis. A treatment program will be developed aimed at resolving the problems identified as well as to attain the goals you set in conjunction with the therapist.
What types of interventions may I receive?
The interventions you receive will depend on what the physical therapist finds in the examination/evaluation. Our intervention programs include coordination among all people involved in your care (other health care professionals, family, friends, caregivers, and others), communication to ensure a good exchange of information, thorough documentation of the care and services provided, and instruction to you and others involved in your care to promote and optimize our services. Most physical therapy plans of care will include three categories of interventions: therapeutic exercise; functional training in self-care and home management; and functional training in work or school, community, and leisure environments. Other interventions might include manual therapy techniques; use of equipment such as supports or prosthetics; skin repair and protection techniques; electrotherapeutic modalities; and mechanical modalities.
How long will my visit last?
Intervention time will vary according to what the physical therapist finds in the evaluation. There is no specific time limit for physical and occupational therapy. Whatever is found to be appropriate during the examination/evaluation will become part of the patient’s or or client’s program and the program will be updated as appropriate. In general, it’s a good idea to plan on 45-60 minutes for your first visit.
How is my progress measured?
Because your physical or occupational therapist will perform a meticulous examination/evaluation, quantifying and qualifying all the deficits and problems you are presenting with, examination/evaluation to determine progress are possible. You will be re-examined based on your diagnosis as well as the chronicity of the problem. Additionally, the therapist always needs to be aware of follow-up visits with your physician as a re-examination may be performed so that the physician can be updated at that time.
Will I need follow-up or maintenance care?
The answer depends entirely on the physical therapist’s examination/evaluation to determine your diagnosis and prognosis.
What if I need to return to physical therapy?
If you have a recurrent problem after your discharge from physical or occupational therapy, your return to therapy will depend on a number of factors. It would depend if it was a re-injury of the same specific problem, how long it has been since you were last in therapy, how long it has been since you saw the physician (if a physician referred you), and many other factors. In general, if you are discharged from therapy and feel the need to return, you should contact the therapist who treated you. He or she will review your chart and call back to discuss with you what should be done, depending on the problem you are having.
Is it ok to ask my doctor about physical therapy?
Absolutely. If you have a problem that you think can be helped with physical therapy, feel free to give us a call. After discussing with you the specific problem you present with, we can give you a better idea if it is something that is manageable with physical therapy. You can also give your doctor a call. If he or she is not sure, he or she is welcome to contact us as well. In today’s healthcare, if you feel physical therapy can be helpful to you, you will need to stress your feelings to the doctor you are seeing.
Will my insurance cover physical therapy?
Although most insurance companies do cover physical and occupational therapy, if and what they cover specifically varies greatly. Please review our billing and insurance participation section on this website, and if you have additional questions regarding your specific insurance give us a call. It is not possible to keep this information always up to date on the website. The state of Iowa does allow direct access to physical therapy without a physician referral, however, not all insurance companies will reimburse for therapy without a physician referral. Once again, if in doubt, contact either your insurance company or our office.
How do I arrange an appointment?
Simply call our office for an appointment, 563-288-6787 or you can request to schedule an appointment through our website’s online ‘Contact Us’ form. Our clinic hours and location are explained on the location and hours page of this website. Our office staff will get all the necessary information from you and assist you with an appointment.
What should I wear?
In general, wear comfortable clothing to therapy. If you are presenting with a problem of your cervical spine, upper back or shoulders, the therapist can provide you with an undershirt as needed to expose these areas. If you are coming for a lower-extremity problem, shorts are best and provided if needed. Many bring clothing with them to change into.
What should I bring with me?
For your first visit with ITS , you will need to bring the following items with you in order to help your intake and orientation process go smoothly:
- A list of your current medications and a list of surgeries
- A current, valid photo I.D.
- Your insurance card
- Your Physician’s Order for therapy (if applicable)
If you have any operative reports, MRI or X-ray results, please bring those as well. They are not necessary, but very helpful. Additionally, if you are utilizing any type of brace, splint, or crutches, those should come with you. If you have any questions, just contact our office at 563-288-6787.
What if I have an increase in symptoms?
If you have increased symptoms please call your therapist. When you call the office, please be sure you explain to the office staff that you are having an increase in symptoms. The office staff will pull your chart and contact your therapist or a covering therapist. We will be able to review the information at that time, or if unavailable will give you a call back that same day. After we discuss the case with you, we will be able to give you guidelines as to what would be appropriate to reduce your symptoms, whether you need to come in our office, or if you should contact or follow up with your physician. It is best to call us prior to calling your physician if a change in symptoms has occurred. It is important that we fax the physician a report so that he/she can be up to date on your care when you see him/her for a follow-up visit.
Who chooses which physical therapist I go to?
Oftentimes, your physician will give you a recommendation or a listing of physical therapists in your area. Sometimes your insurance company will guide you with regard to who is “in network” for your insurance plan. Ultimately, however, the decision as to where you receive your care is up to you. If you have a specific request, you need to let your physician or insurance company know. If we are not in your network for your insurance company, most plans have out-of-network benefits that will allow you your choice in physical therapy.
What office policies should I be aware of?
We would like to ask our clients to partner with us in helping ITS continue to provide our clients with the best service and quality in the community. We’d like to ask the following of our clients:
- If you have to reschedule an appointment … Please call as soon as you are aware of a conflict. We’ll be happy to reschedule for a more convenient time as we do understand conflicts come up.
- If you will be late … Please call us! If it will be more than just a few minutes we may or may not need to reschedule your appointment.
- If you know you’re going to miss your appointment … Again, please call if you know you will not be able to keep your appointment. If you forget about an appointment, we will gladly reschedule a time that will fit your schedule.
- Before returning to your physician … Let your therapist know when you will be returning and we will send them a report indicating your plan of care and the progress you’ve made. Most physicians rely on our progress reports!
- If you have a payment due … If you have a co-pay or coinsurance, we ask that you make that payment following each visit. If necessary, we can work with you on a payment plan.
- Not to bring children to your appointment… Because you need to be able to focus on your treatment, it is best to arrange for the children to be at home.
What is my responsiblity in physical therapy?
You are our partner in your recovery. Your physical or occupational therapist cannot do it without you! We ask that all patients and clients cooperate by following through with their home exercise programs and instructions, as this is extremely important in expediting your recovery.
Why should I choose you?
Because of our expertise. With over 60 years of combined experience, we are widely regarded as a leading expert in physical and occupational therapy. Physicians regularly send their own office staff and family members to our facility. We are dedicated to resolving your problems in an environment that is welcoming and relaxed. Patients receive personalized care, not an assembly line atmosphere. If you are still not sure, feel free to give us a call and stop in to speak to one of our therapists.
“Let our strength help you regain yours.”