The opioid crisis is a multifaceted issue requiring a multifaceted solution. It challenges our health care system in a way that it rarely has been challenged before—requiring payers, providers, legislatures, regulators, community leaders, and others to come together to find a comprehensive solution.
Physical therapy is an important part of that solution. That's a message APTA has promoted heavily through #ChoosePT—its award-winning consumer awareness campaign—and additional efforts designed to influence payers, lawmakers, and others. The word is getting out, and needed changes have resulted. However, a great deal of work remains to be done.
The Evidence Is In
Here's the crux of the problem: To effectively reduce people's exposure to opioids, providers and patients must fully consider nonpharmacological options for pain management. Further, those options must be reimbursed at levels that make them readily accessible.