Why Telehealth for Physical Therapy Improves Outcomes

Portrait of physiotherapist using digital tablet

The Importance of Continuing PT During COVID-19

Given the need to observe social distancing, physical therapists are using telehealth to help patients continue their therapy so patients do not lose the momentum of their recovery.  With a virtual care communication platform, therapists are able to help injured or ill people improve their movement and manage their pain more efficiently via HIPAA-compliant video and messaging.

In response to the COVID-19 public health emergency, APTA has noted that CMS is covering some types of telehealth services that are furnished remotely by PTs, including e-visits, virtual check-ins, remote evaluation of recorded video or images, and telephone assessment and management services (medical discussion).APTA also shared that these telehealth services may also be covered by commercial payers and suggests that PTs and agencies first determine if one’s state practice act enables one to legally provide services via telehealth and, second, check with each payer policy to see if PTs and PTAs are included as providers eligible to be paid for telehealth services.

How Synzi Facilitates Telerehab

Synzi’s virtual care platform is helping home health agencies, PTs, and PTAs continue to provide therapy for patients under stay-at-home orders or following social distancing guidelines.

  • Virtual Visits: During the virtual visits, therapists guide their patients through the exercises needed to optimize outcomes (e.g., more strength and movement with less pain) and reinforce how to correctly do each exercise.
  • Messaging: A series of messages can be sent to the patient to remind them of the need to “get up and get moving” on a regular basis and fulfill their role in executing their own home exercise plan.
  • Assessments: Assessments can be pushed to the patients before or after each virtual visit to gauge how the patient is feeling as well as the patient’s exercise activities.  These assessments enable the therapists to check on the patient’s progress and modify the exercises going forward.

The flexibility in providing care virtually also helps agencies when a therapist is unexpectedly unavailable for an upcoming virtual visit.  Other available therapists can use the Synzi platform to provide short-term coverage via video.  Appointments will not always need to be rescheduled and patients will be able to access the therapy support they need on a more consistent basis.  With Synzi, therapists help patients improve their movement and manage their pain more efficiently.

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