alexa Physical therapy use by community-based older people.
Physicaltherapy & Rehabilitation

Physicaltherapy & Rehabilitation

International Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

Author(s): Freburger JK, Holmes GM

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Abstract BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Little information is available on factors associated with physical therapy use. Identifying the characteristics of people who use physical therapy and some of the factors associated with its use is a useful first step in determining whether disparities exist in physical therapy use. The purpose of this study was to identify factors associated with physical therapy use by community-based older people. SUBJECTS: The subjects were community-based people 65 years of age or older who participated in the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey and had at least one physician encounter (N=38,312 person-years across 20,227 individuals). METHODS: Logit and ordinary least squares regression analyses were conducted to identify factors associated with physical therapy use. RESULTS: Several measures of health and function were associated with physical therapy use. Several demographic, insurance, and geographic characteristics also were associated with physical therapy use. Income, education, having supplemental private insurance, participating in a managed care plan, and physical therapist supply were positively associated with physical therapy use. Age was negatively associated with physical therapy use. For people who saw a physical therapist, amount of physical therapy received was positively associated with income, having supplemental private insurance, living in a metropolitan area, physical therapist supply, and being African American. Amount of physical therapy received was negatively associated with being in a managed care plan. DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS: Variation in physical therapy use, explained by factors other than need, suggests potential underuse or overuse of physical therapy by community-based older people.
This article was published in Phys Ther and referenced in International Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

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