GRAND RAPIDS (AP)- A doctor's prescription will no longer be needed to go to physical therapy in Michigan.
People will be able to receive treatment for 21 days or 10 treatments, whichever comes first, without a prescription. Or they can go for an unlimited number of visits if it's to prevent injury or promote fitness. Health insurers won't have to cover physical therapy services if a prescription isn't issued.
Supporters say allowing direct access to physical therapy will bring Michigan in line with 48 other states and expand consumer choice, prevent delays, contain medical costs and lead to better patient outcomes.
Jeffery Regan, head of the Physical Therapy department at Orthopaedic Associates of Michigan was working inside a busy therapy room Wednesday as many patients, their insurance deductibles having already been met, worked to squeeze in one more visit before the insurance clock reset.
Regan says the new law is a baby step.
"I think it's a great step in a positive direction for all patients," he adds.