health and wellness

Telehealth: Physical Therapy from Home

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Rachel Clausen PT, DPT Pelvic pain doesn’t stop because of a pandemic. Beyond Basics Physical Therapy wants to make sure you have access to the care you need to stay healthy and feeling good in your body. If you are unable to leave your home because of coronavirus, we want you to know we are currently offering telehealth to new and existing patients who are in need of care. So what is telehealth you may ask? Telehealth is the use of telecommunication technologies to provide remote healthcare services. Both audio and video technologies are used to evaluate and treat patients who are unable to attend an in-person appointment, like a video chat or facetime. After extensive research, Beyond Basics has decided to use as our telehealth platform. This platform is easy to use, does not require downloads, and is HIPPA compliant, meaning the sessions are fully protected and encrypted. Telehealth is also now accepted by a wide range of insurance companies, including Medicare. You may be thinking, what can a PT do without being able to touch me? The answer is a lot! We can assess posture, mobility, movement strategies, coordination, prescribe and progress exercises, assess work from home set-ups, provide pain relief strategies, discuss behavioral modifications, work on breathing and system down-training, and the list goes on. Even if you feel that eventually you may need hands on treatment in clinic, telehealth can go a long way towards providing a sturdy foundation of strength, mobility, and good postural habits and strategies to allow hands on treatment to take hold more rapidly when you can come in. As a PT I have found it especially helpful to be able to work with patients in their home environment. We are able to recreate positions in which you experience pain and work through modifications to decrease that pain. We can work on sitting posture and workstation ergonomics using the desk and chair you spend hours each day using. We can work on movement strategies in your environment, such as emptying the dishwasher or picking up a child in order to optimize core activation and decrease symptoms with functional activities. It is exciting to see patients continue to make progress towards reaching their goals despite being home without physical PT contact. Are you interested in telehealth, but not sure you have the necessary equipment? All you need for a telehealth session is a computer or phone, internet connection, and enough room to move around and lay down on the floor. Other helpful (but not necessary) items may include TheraBand, foam roller, balls, weights and yoga blocks. Don’t have any of these items? Don’t worry, PTs are great at being creative and using household items as props. Don’t have a foam roller? We can use a rolling pin or a bottle of wine to roll out tight muscles. Don’t have a yoga block? We can use books or pillows as props. Don’t have any weights? We can use soup cans or a bag of rice. Getting creative is part of the fun! How does billing work? Most likely, your current billing will not change, as many insurances are covering telehealth physical therapy sessions. However, for some plans, reimbursement rates may be different for telehealth services. All billing will be continued to be submitted by our staff. We are currently offering discounted rates and packages in order to serve our community at this time. Please contact [email protected] for further billing information and clarification. If you are interested in a telehealth PT session please contact our midtown office at (212) 354-2622 or downtown office at (212) 267-0240 to make an appointment or if you are uncertain if telehealth will work for you, we are offering a free 15 minute consult for a limited period of time. We are also continuing to offer in office appointments for those who would prefer them. We look forward to helping you reach your goals and returning to the activities you love, symptom free!

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