Physical Therapy

Physical Therapists Have the Power to Change the Future of Healthcare

Physical Therapists have a rare opportunity to change the future of healthcare. In this analysis, you can read more about why our healthcare system is broken and what to expect if things stay the same.

What can PTs do to revolutionize their industry and thrive into the future?

Let’s come back to that question in a minute…

Imagine you’re treating a patient experiencing a wrist sprain from a fall. You treat this patient for 6-8 weeks until her wrist is rehabilitated, then you send her on her way.


Wrong. Although you have done your job in this scenario by healing the patient of her injury, you have not provided the best expert care or created any future opportunities between you and this patient.

Instead, as the patient comes in for her wrist injury, get to know her and how the injury occurred. Imagine she tells you about her knee pain that she has experienced for years. She had been working out one night, which caused her knee pain to worsen. Her knee was weak and gave out on her, causing her to fall and land on her wrist, causing the injury there. She also tells you that she is diabetic and takes several medications.

There are so many opportunities here that it would be absolutely wrong for you to not address them. It’s so important to address the risk factors that contributed to this patient’s fall and create a plan of care that can fix those problems.

By providing additional care for her chronic knee pain and strengthening her leg muscles, you would help her feel better AND most importantly, save her from falling in the future. Falls can cause injuries requiring costly surgeries, treatment and medications.

In your conversation with the patient regarding her diabetes and medications, you may discover that she is not taking the right medicine to control her diabetes, which can lead to severe health issues related to diabetic complications in the future. By referring her to a great local physician, you will tremendously improve this patient’s satisfaction with your treatment and overall health into the future.

Not to mention, you have generated far more revenue from this patient and likely additional referrals from her as well. You have created a patient for life.

Back to the question mentioned above, what can PTs do to revolutionize their industry and thrive into the future?

The answer is, prevention.

As mentioned in the story above, prevention can do so much for patients—in turn, doing so much for practice owners and the future of healthcare.

To put it simply…


  • Helps patients feel better
  • Gives patients a better physical therapy experience
  • Prevents future illness and injury

Prevention then:

  • Helps build trust between patients and PTs
  • Creates better patient retention
  • Increases revenue per patient
  • Helps PTs feel they are giving their patients the best care
  • Increases referrals from loyal, satisfied patients

To go even FURTHER, prevention:

  • Decreases the amount of future injuries and illnesses in the country
  • Decreases the surgeries, treatment and medication needed in the country
  • Ultimately, takes less and less money from the healthcare system, decreasing the Medicare debt and lengthening the lifespan of our healthcare system

As a great PT, you already know the importance of prevention but it may be difficult to think of the big picture. The APTA concludes that physical therapists are uniquely qualified to provide wellness services that focus on prevention and help patients reach their goals. This is how you can transform society and evolve ahead of the curve (WebPT).

You are given these tools, it would be wrong not to use them to better the future of your patients, your practice and the healthcare system. Everything you do today, effects the future of healthcare.

Easily enough, there are just 2 things you need in your private practice to emphasize prevention in your practice and make a significant improvement in your patient care. 

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