The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent quarantine is changing the way healthcare is delivered. Most healthcare companies, including physical therapists, have moved online in an effort to maintain social distancing guidelines. But with change comes the fear of the unknown. How will physical therapy work if not done in person? Is it as effective? Is it worth my time and money? These concerns are normal, but there is exciting data to show that telehealth physical therapy is effective for people with musculoskeletal pain.
Early studies of telehealth utility performed by Russell and colleagues showed that range of motion assessments over online platforms were consistent and accurate when compared to in-person examinations. A more recent article by Grona and colleagues examined multiple research studies of physical therapists using telehealth. This study found that telehealth physical therapy had positive effects on functional outcome scores for multiple regions of the body.
We are living in unprecedented times and it’s time for healthcare to adapt. Unfortunately, your pain is not going to wait until quarantine is over. There is no need to delay your care when we have the ability to improve your function right now through telehealth.
Here is a testimonial from a MEND telehealth client: “My telehealth session with Kristin was very helpful. Since I didn’t have an urgent need for manipulation or dry needling, just talking with Kristin about my progress and goals worked better via telehealth since it was more convenient. While still providing her usual support and encouragement, Kristin packed a lot into the session, even collaborating on the development of a new strength training program that integrated with my existing habits and routine. I finished the telehealth session feeling excited about the next stage of my treatment.”