You’ve made your appointment with OSI, what should you do to get the most out of your first visit?
Check out your therapists’ bio (OSI Staff ). You are always welcome to schedule with a specific therapist who may have similar interests or a specialty that interests you.
If you’re not early, you’re late. Our therapists generally run close to on schedule, so if you are still filling out your paperwork at your appointment time, you are losing valuable time with your PT. Make sure you bring your insurance card and photo ID, that way there are no delays in your insurance coverage.
Many people like to fill out their paperwork before they arrive (link).
1) Download the paperwork and fill it out before you arrive.
• Medical history: this gives your PT some basic information about the condition you are coming in for. Make sure to list all medical history, even things you may not think are important.
• Medication list: expert tip, get a copy from your doctor or electronic medical record and bring it with you to save some writing.
• Authorization to treat: we need you to sign and initial in order to allow us to see you for your first visit
• HIPAA: we don’t share your protected health information, privacy is important!
• Other forms?
2) Be prepared to answer questions about how your condition affects you.
The front desk staff will help you to complete FOTO, a tool that your therapist will use to learn more about your condition. The computer-based questionnaire asks questions specific to the body part you are being seen for. Often times we can predict how many visits it will take to get you feeling better. At OSI, we have shown time and time again that we get our clients better than expected in fewer visits!
3) Dress for success.
If you are coming to see us with a sore neck, a turtleneck or collared shirt may not be the best choice. Instead, wear a loose fitting, open-necked shirt and dress in layers. If you have a back or hip problem, yoga or sports pants can help your therapist to get to the lower back. If you have knee or ankle problem, a pair of your favorite shorts can really allow your therapist to see what is going on. We, of course, have shorts and shirts you can borrow, but most folks are more comfortable in their own clothes.
4) Bring relevant forms or test results.
If you have specific instructions from your doctor, it never hurts to bring them with. Or if you have a copy of your MRI or x-ray report, bring it with and ask your PT to help explain the findings.
5) Come with an open mind.
Many people think physical therapy is just working out in a gym or getting some boring exercises to do at home. Depending on why you’re coming in, your treatment will often include hands-on treatment, education to help you understand your condition (we have time that primary care doctors and surgeons don’t), and probably some homework for you to work on in between sessions.
We look forward to the chance to get to know you and help you move better, contact our intake team if you have any other questions about how to prepare for your first appointment.