Continuity of care is important.
Federal law now ensures that PTs are able to take advantage of something APTA has been working on for several years—the ability to provide care continuity for Medicare patients in the PT's absence through a provision known as "locum tenens."
While APTA originally pressed for locum tenens to be extended to all PTs, the final version of the legislation applies only to PTs in non-metropolitan statistical areas, medically underserved areas (MUAs), and health professions shortage areas as defined by the US Department of Health and Human Services. Clearly, locum tenens allowances for PTs need to be expanded.
Why It Matters
Continuity of care is important, particularly in physical therapy. Patients shouldn't have to have their care interrupted, and PTs shouldn't be forced to suspend services during temporary absences for illness, pregnancy, vacation, or continuing medical education.
APTA supports expansion of Medicare locum tenens policies in ways that would make these provisions available to as many PTs as possible
Apr 9, 2021 / Position Paper
Mar 1, 2020 / Article