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Service Utilization and Costs of Patients at a Cash-Based Physical Therapy Clinic

Pulford, Kyle, PT, DPT; Kilduff, Brittany, PT, DPT, CSCS; Hanney, William J., PT, DPT, PhD; Kolber, Morey, PhD, PT, OCS, Cert. MDT, CSCSD; Liu, Xinliang, PhD; Miller, Ron, DPT, OCS

doi: 10.1097/HCM.0000000000000247

Cash-based physical therapy, a model in which the clinicians do not accept insurance payments and accept only direct payment, is quickly becoming an enticing option for clinicians who own their own practice. The purpose of this study was to describe service utilization for a single cash-based physical therapy clinic. Forty-eight charts of patients who had been discharged between 2013 and 2016 were randomly selected. The data were deidentified prior to the researchers gaining access. Chronic diagnoses were predominately prevalent (n = 28). The lumbo/pelvic region of diagnoses (39.6%) and knee/leg region of diagnoses (29.2%) encompassed the majority of the diagnoses. The mean physical therapy utilization for the cohort per episode of care was 8.0 ± 8.1 visits per episode of care, total cost of $780.19 ± 530.30 per episode of care, and $97.52 per visit. This study is the first to present data regarding costs, utilization, and patient demographics for a cash-based physical therapy clinic.

Author Affiliations: Doctor of Physical Therapy Program (Drs Pulford, Kilduff, and Hanney), University of Central Florida; Department of Physical Therapy, Nova Southeastern University, Ft Lauderdale, Florida (Dr Kolber); Department of Health Management and Informatics, University of Central Florida (Dr Liu); and Pursuit Physical Therapy (Dr Miller), Orlando, Florida.

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

Correspondence: William J. Hanney, PT, DPT, PhD Physical Therapy Program, University of Central Florida, 12805 Pegasus Dr, Orlando, FL 32816 (

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