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  • Dr. Michael Minder, PT, DPT

I Have Pain. How Do I See A Physical Therapist ASAP, Even During COVID-19?


Everyone knows that when you have aches and pains, you should not let it fester but see a good physical therapist (PT) right away! ‘Well don’t I have to see a Physician first’? Nope, Florida is one of 28 states that allow direct patient access to PT.[1] However; you need to get a physician prescription if your treatment plan exceeds 30 days here in Florida.

Well, what about COVID-19? PT is deemed ‘an essential service’ in every State and was never shut down. [2] With proper disinfection, social distancing, and preventative methods (masks and gloves) for both patient and therapist, PT is a safe environment for a speedy recovery! [3]

Keep the ball rolling! Do not let yourself regress if you have started therapy, or have stopped for whatever reason. A typical injury or episode of pain requires 6-12 weeks of therapy. Physiological muscle strengthening takes 6-8 weeks.[4] Even if your pain goes away, 90% of people who resolve their back pain, re-injure[5] without therapy.

If you are an existing patient, and cannot make it in to our Physical Therapy office, you can still see a therapist through Telehealth[6]; obviously, it cannot replace hands-on treatment, but even over the computer or telephone, a PT can give direction for self-manual treatment and prescribe an exercise program.

Check your insurance or give us a call at (305) 595-9425, to see if your plan requires a doctor’s prescription or allows telehealth services.

By Dr. Michael Minder PT, DPT, Kine BSc.

Physical Therapist at Orthopedic Rehabilitation Specialists

[1] https://floridasphysicaltherapy.gov/forms/pt-study-2016.pdf

[2] https://www.flgov.com/wp-content/uploads/orders/2020/EO_20-91.pdf

[3] http://www.floridahealth.gov/newsroom/2020/03/031520-2110-covid19.pr.html

[4] https://physoc.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1113/expphysiol.1989.sp003268

[5] Freburger JK, Holmes GM, Agans RP, et al. The rising prevalence of chronic low back pain. Arch Intern Med. 2009;169(3):251–258. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2008.543

[6] https://floridasphysicaltherapy.gov/latest-news/telehealth/