An annual visit allows physical therapists to determine health status and identify health risks of individuals in their community.
Why Provide an Annual Physical Therapy Visit
Clients benefit: Physical therapists have the education, experience, and expertise necessary to provide a broad health screening to allow tracking the patient's health status over time. It also may lead to a referral for a physical therapist evaluation and treatment plan or to another health care professional for potential problems identified during the visit.
Physical therapists benefit: An annual visit allows clinics to diversify their services, bringing in new clients and retaining current clients as physical therapists create ongoing relationships with their client base. It also diversifies the income string by providing a source not dependent on third-party payers.
Implementing an Annual Visit
Follow these steps:
- Access the annual visit form.
Annual Physical Therapy Visit: Pediatric Population
Annual Physical Therapy Visit: Adult Population
Annual Physical Therapy Visit: Aging Population*
- APTA members may download these forms. Other users will need to request permission. Be sure to carefully review the instructions for use. (Note: There are separate templates for adults and children).
- Determine your referral network. The screening could identify risks or problems beyond your expertise or scope of practice.
- Determine how you will track results for each annual visit. Whether you add data to the Annual Physical Therapy Visit template or input into an electronic health record system, the value of the annual visit is emphasized by tracking the results over time.
- Determine payment for services. An annual visit will often be a cash-based service. APTA cannot suggest pricing for the visit.
- Practice conducting the visit. Before implementing the visit, practice on your colleagues to be sure that you feel prepared to efficiently perform it, including having the necessary equipment and space.
- Market your annual visit. Develop materials describing your annual visit services. Distribute them to your current patients and leave materials in the waiting room for family members. Encourage them to make a future appointment.
- Consider best practices. Strive to make the annual visit a robust offering at your clinic and in your community.
For the Aging Population, APTA and APTA Geriatrics offer these additional templates:
Aug 30, 2018 / Policies & Bylaws
Jun 2, 2020
Research continues to show the significant benefits of lifestyle changes on health.
Additional Annual Physical Therapy Visit Content
Aug 27, 2021 / Podcast
PTJ Editor-in-Chief Alan Jette, PT, PhD, FAPTA, talks with Kathleen Mangione, PT, PhD, FAPTA, about something critically important to physical therapists but rarely top of mind: treatment fidelity.
Oct 1, 2019 / Feature
As an adjunct to physical therapist interventions, a well-trained animal often can make a difference.
Sep 1, 2019 / Feature
PTs and PTAs are exploring the uses and potential of 3D printing in clinical practice.
Aug 1, 2019 / Feature
In an increasingly technological age, mainstay items of physical therapy such as exercise balls, foam rollers, and elastic resistance bands retain their therapeutic value-and will continue to do so, these PTs say.
Mar 5, 2019 / Article
The FDA generally regards oxygen to be a prescription drug.
Mar 1, 2019 / Feature
Patients are riding horses to therapeutic and rehabilitative success, led by PTs trained in hippotherapy.
Apr 1, 2018 / Feature
Do some of your patients resist exercise? Try making it joyful.
Jul 1, 2016 / Feature
Clinical reasoning skills can be strengthened at any age and at any experience level. Here's advice for both the recent graduate and the experienced practitioner.