If you have Medicare or Worker's Compensation your insurance requires that you have a referral or order for physical therapy services. Otherwise, no, you do not need a doctor's referral. In NYS you have direct access to physical therapy which means you can go to a physical therapist without a referral for 10 visits or 30 days.
Call me. We can discuss your unique problem, options, and if I am the best provider for you.
The only way to know for sure is to call your insurance and ask what their reimbursement is for an out of network provider. And you may want to ask your insurance what you'd pay if you went to an in-network PT provider in another office. You'll want to consider your deductible status and copays you'll owe in that office that participates with your insurance. Due to rising copays and deductibles, many will find that the amount per visit is not far from going to a direct pay practice. There is also quality of care and number of visits to consider when determining what you may pay in total. Wherever you go for physical therapy ask up front what you will pay and how many visits are expected. We have choice. Knowledge is power. We get what we pay for.
Test results and upcoming surgical interventions don't negate potential improvements. Test results only tell us part of the whole story and they don't tell us how we feel and function. Every person deserves a thorough evaluation to determine optimal potential.
I'd love for us to get on the phone and discuss what experience you've had in physical therapy before and why you feel that it was not helpful. I recommend prior to scheduling in any PT clinic you ask about the provider's approach, experience and how they handle lack of improvement. Successful outcomes start with a great fit between you and your provider. Don't you want to know who you're going to work with and how they practice? Ask lots of questions.
I love this one..... You can and you may get lucky to find something that works, or find something that just doesn't make you worse (but that seems like a waste of time and not worse doesn't mean better), or you find something that makes you worse but you think it needs to feel worse to get better. You may also find that there is a gazillion things that experts tell you that you should do for that diagnosis that you also found on the internet. Keep it simple.... Get the right diagnosis. Get the right treatment. (My "Laser" PT option may be a really great option for you if time is an issue and you're a go-getter.)