Bay State Physical Therapy – COVID-19 Update

Our Valued Patients,

We wanted to provide you an update on our therapy operations during this difficult time. We have been working diligently to ensure that we can continue to care for our patients in need of physical therapy services, while also implementing policies and procedures to keep you and our team members safe.

As of Monday, March 23rd, 2020, Bay State Physical Therapy will begin transitioning certain visits to telehealth. We have been developing the telehealth/virtual visit capability over the last couple of months and will be offering one-on-one telehealth/virtual appointments for lower-acuity and routine patient visits. We will be keeping 57 clinics throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island open for new patient evaluations, re-evaluations, and emergency patient visits to ensure that you are able to receive the care that you need. All in-clinic visits are subject to passing COVID-19 screening procedures to ensure patient and team member safety.

We are grateful to be able to serve you during this challenging time, and we will work diligently to continue to assist with your care journey.

Be well,

The Team at Bay State Physical Therapy

 Please see below for additional information on our response to COVID-19.

What is changing?

Bay State Physical Therapy is transitioning lower acuity and routine visits to telehealth/virtual visits beginning 3/23/20. 57 of our locations throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island will remain open for new patient evaluations, re-evaluations, and emergency visits.

Why are we transitioning some patients to virtual visits?

The safety of our patients and team members is paramount to Bay State Physical Therapy, and we also believe that we have an obligation to support social distancing efforts in our communities. We prefer to provide in-person care, but we believe that virtual visits will ensure that you continue to progress towards your goals and objectives.

What is a telehealth/virtual visit?

Virtual visits are a one-on-one remote therapy visit with your physical therapist. The visits will last for 30 minutes each, and you will be directly connected through video on your phone, tablet or computer. To assist with this connection, we will be using a program called Physitrack, a dynamic exercise-based program that is available for free.

How do I get Physitrack?

Your therapists will be reaching out to schedule you for your visit and can assist with downloading the free application. You can download the application on your phone, tablet or computer, as long as a camera is accessible (let your therapist know if you don’t have one). We will be sending out emails that include a download link and patient code. Be on the lookout!

Why stay open at all?

Physical Therapy plays a critical role in reducing stress on other areas of the healthcare system. Our healthcare colleagues in primary care and emergency room settings will be challenged during the time ahead, and physical therapy has the vital responsibility of managing musculoskeletal symptoms, improving your health, and keeping you all out of the doctor’s office and emergency room.

It is important to remember that our patients have a wide array of diagnosis, and that some of you are further along in your care journey than others. For those of you that have progressed and aren’t experiencing acute pain, virtual visits will be a great solution for continued rehabilitation. However, many of our patients are in pain or have limited mobility. It is vital that we assist with pain management, help them avoid higher risk environments, and allow other medical professionals to focus on defeating COVID-19.

What are you doing to ensure patient and team safety in your clinics?

We recognize that there is no perfect solution to eliminate risk, but we are doing everything in our power to create a low risk environment.

Screening

Patient Care Coordinators are screening patients for symptoms by phone and in-person. If you are exhibiting any of the following symptoms, we ask that you reschedule your visit at the later of 14 days or the elimination of symptoms.

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chills
  • Fever (also now checked upon arrival)
  • Sneezing with nasal discharge

All team members are also conducting daily screening for symptoms. Any employee presenting symptoms consistent with COVID-19 will be sent home to self-quarantine for 14 days

Spacing and Distancing

  • All care is one-on-one with a physical therapist
  • Actively managing patient spacing within clinics
  • Prohibited vendors, observers, and other non-essential individuals from entering the clinics

Hygiene

  • Reiterated handwashing and hygiene protocols with team members
  • Implemented mandatory hand washing upon patient arrival
  • Enhanced cleaning regimen of clinics and equipment
  • Placed alcohol-based sanitizer in the clinics for patient and employee use

General

  • Conducting COVID-19 response meetings to assess patient and team member risk
  • Coordinating with leading healthcare and infection agencies to mitigate potential risks

Are you accepting new patients?

Yes! We understand that pain and injuries don’t disappear just because of COVID-19. If your insurance requires a script, a call to you physician’s office will allow you to avoid an in-person doctor’s appointment.

What does the “Stay-At-Home Advisory” mean for Bay State Physical Therapy patients?

As an essential service, physical therapy is explicitly excluded from shelter in place requirements. Due to physical therapy’s critical role in keeping patients out of physician offices, the Department of Homeland Security has classified therapists as essential infrastructure workers and has indicated that we have a special responsibility to remain open. Bay State Physical Therapy is committed to providing care to our patients during this challenging time and you are permitted to receive treatment in the clinic and through telehealth.

Keep Up to Date:

The situation is constantly evolving, so please keep up to date with our latest news, information and health tips. Follow us on social media:

For more information on COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and the ways to keep your family and communities safe, please visit the CDC website, Mass.gov, Rhode Island Department of Health or New Hampshire.gov.

The safety and well-being of our patients and employees is our highest priority. If you have any questions, comments or concerns please reach out to your local clinic manager.