Journal of Physical Therapy Science
Online ISSN : 2187-5626
Print ISSN : 0915-5287
ISSN-L : 0915-5287
Review Article
Direct access to physical therapy for the patient with musculoskeletal disorders, a literature review
Leonardo PianoFilippo MaselliAntonello VicecontiSilvia GianolaAldo Ciuro
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2017 Volume 29 Issue 8 Pages 1463-1471


[Purpose] To present legislation comparing direct and referred access—or other measures—to physical therapy. The focus is on the management of the most burdensome musculoskeletal disorders in terms of regulations, costs, effectiveness, safety and cost-effectiveness. [Methods] Main biomedical databases and gray literature were searched ranging from a global scenario to the analysis of targeted geographical areas and specifically Italy and the Region Piedmont. [Results] legislation on Direct Access highlights inconsistencies among the countries belonging to World Confederation for Physical Therapy. Direct Access could be an effective, safe and efficient organization model for the management of patients with musculoskeletal diseases and seems to be more effective safer and cost effective. [Conclusion] Direct Access is a virtuous model which can help improve the global quality of physical therapy services. Further studies are required to confirm this approach and determine whether the findings of the present overview can be replicated in different countries and healthcare systems.

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© 2017 by the Society of Physical Therapy Science. Published by IPEC Inc.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (by-nc-nd) License.
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