Direct Access of Physical Therapy

Direct Access of Physical Therapy

McCarthy Physical Therapy now accepts patients without physician referral! Get the relief and recovery you need NOW – without a physician prescription.

In California, Patients are able to be evaluated and treated by a licensed physical therapist without first obtaining a physician’s referral under legislation called Direct Access. This immediate access to therapeutic care leads to a much higher rate of success in a timely manner for individuals seeking services.

The Summary of the LAW:

As of January 1, 2014, California law under AB1000 allows licensed physical therapists to provide direct physical therapy evaluation and treatment services for a period of up to 45 calendar days or 12 visits, whichever comes first, after which time a physical therapist may continue providing you with physical therapy treatment services only after receiving, from a per son holding a physician and surgeon’s certificate issued by the Medical Board of California or by the Osteopathic Medical Board of California or from a per son holding a certificate to practice podiatric medicine from the California Board of Podiatric Medicine and acting with his or her scope of practice, a dated signature on the physical therapist’s plan of care indication approval of the physical therapist’s plan of care and that an in-person patient examination and evaluation was conducted by the physician and surgeon or podiatrist.

Benefits to you:

Direct Access benefits our patient s in that it allows you to expedite treatment, saving time and money. Eliminate delays that can result in decreased functional outcomes and frustration. It allows for earlier return to daily activities and reduces the need for long-term care by providing early intervention. Studies have shown that immediate care for most injuries can reduce the healing time. If the conditions/symptoms are outside our scope of practice we can refer to licensed MD, DO, or DPM to facilitate your care.


We encourage you to contact your insurance provider to determine your benefits in terms of direct access coverage. In many cases with direct access, insurance are now reimbursing, because they realize that it costs less when you, our patient, the choice to access physical therapy without delay. If your insurance provider does not cover direct access, we offer competitive cash pay rates to facilitate your care. Our physical therapists will work with you to establish a plan of care that will accomplish your goals and maintain efficiency of treatment.

Thank you.

Tim McCarthy, P.T.