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FAQs

Let Us Answer Your Questions

We are passionate about helping you achieve your goals. We understand that you may have questions about starting physical therapy — especially if it’s your first time in our clinics. We’ll go over what you can expect and answer any concerns before your first appointment. If you have more questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

About Physical Therapy

About Physical Therapy

What Is Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy uses specially designed exercises and equipment, rather than surgery or medication, to help patients regain or improve their physical abilities. Our clinicians are experts in motion and have advanced degrees, which gives them the experience and education to provide you with the highest standard of care, backed by the latest research and treatment options.

Choosing physical therapy first lowers the cost of your care, and research has proven that physical therapy and supervised exercise can help you stay healthy and active. It’s a natural, safe, long-lasting course of treatment that helps you get back to normal activity. Physical therapy can help you avoid opioids and other medications that carry adverse risks and side effects, and it’s a great way to avoid extensive procedures like surgery or imaging tests — including X-rays, MRIs and CT scans. 

What Is A Physical Therapist?

Physical therapists are movement experts, committed to helping you get back to your life and doing what you love. They are trusted healthcare professionals with extensive clinical experience who can help prevent and treat conditions that both limit your daily activities and ability to move and function. All physical therapists have a graduate degree — either a master’s degree or a clinical doctorate — from an accredited physical therapy program, and pass both the national and appropriate state licensure examinations.

When you see a physical therapist you receive expert care — backed by decades of research, complete with current treatments and proven techniques that will get you back to doing the things you love.

Make an appointment today and take your first step toward better health. 

What Is Occupational And Hand Therapy?

Occupational and hand therapy blends the art and science of rehabilitating the human body’s upper extremities to help people participate in everyday activities. Common occupational/hand therapy treatments include helping children with disabilities to participate fully in school and social situations, helping people recovering from injury to regain skills and providing support for older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes. 

What Is A Hand Therapist?

“A hand therapist is an occupational therapist or physical therapist who, through advanced study and experience, specializes in treating individuals with conditions affecting the hands and upper extremity,” according to the American Society of Hand Therapists. “Using specialized skills in assessment and treatment, hand therapists work with their patients to prevent injury or impairment, restore functional activity and enhance participation in daily life. A hand specialist also may have advanced certification as a Certified Hand Therapist (CHT).”

Who Guides My Rehabilitation?

Our entire team of clinical professionals, including physical therapists, occupational hand therapists, certified athletic trainers and other clinical support staff, work to design a personalized plan that will help you reach your overall health goals.

Depending on your diagnosis, your treatment plan could include a combination of different techniques including:

  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Electrical or thermal treatment options
  • Patient education
  • Massage therapy
  • Manual therapy
  • Functional exercises

Many of our centers offer massage therapy and personal training, as well as full-service health club amenities to maximize your healing and progress. 

Is My Physician Involved?

Some states require you to see a physician and get a prescription before seeing one of our physical therapists. However, a prescription is not required in several states where we have clinics. This means you have direct access to physical therapy, without the need for a referral or prescription from your physician. Direct access provides you with an immediate option to start physical therapy treatment as soon as possible.

We have strong relationships with physicians and we will make sure you can see the appropriate professional when you need to. The physician/therapist relationship is integral to help you heal effectively. Your physician will receive a detailed copy of your initial evaluation, along with other notes as you progress through rehabilitation, advancing toward your stated goals.

Do I Need A Prescription Or Referral?

Each state has different requirements for physical or occupational therapy services. In some cases, you may need to obtain a prescription from a healthcare provider before your appointment.

Even if a prescription is necessary, you can choose where you go for physical therapy.

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Before Your First Visit

Before Your First Visit

How Do I Make An Appointment?

Call, email, use our online request form or reach out on social media to schedule an appointment at one of our clinics nearest you. We’ll schedule you quickly, sometimes the same or next day, but always in 24 to 48 hours.

How Do I Find An Athletico Clinic?

Visit our locations page for a list of our clinics to find one closest to you. We provide state-of-the art equipment and technology for the best physical and occupational therapy treatments, and we employ rigorous standards to achieve the highest levels of quality and safety. Our clinics have an open-floor design to enhance your healing experience and allow us to provide more services than other physical therapy providers. Our focus, which stands the test of time, is to provide continuous care with a flexible schedule to meet each of our patients’ needs, when they need us.

Do We Provide Translators?

Yes, language translation services and sign language interpreters are available at no cost to patients and clients. If you need these services, call 1-877-284-5384. 

ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-877-284-5384.

What Should I Bring to My First Visit?

Wear comfortable clothing that is easy to move around in and which allows our therapists to access your point of pain. Clothes such as sweatpants, gym shoes or other work out attire is preferred.

Before you first visit us, please complete your new patient forms and bring them to your first appointment. Please also bring your insurance card, a photo ID, the prescription you received (if needed) from your healthcare provider and any other relevant reports, paperwork or results. If you are using any medical assistive devices, such as a brace, splint or crutches, please be sure you bring them to your visits as well.

What Happens If I Am Late?

Your appointment time reflects when treatment begins. We advise you to arrive 10 minutes early. Please call and let us know if you are running late so we can accommodate you. We ask our patients to be on time, however, we understand that situations do come up. If you are more than 15 minutes late, we may not be able to accommodate you. If this happens, you will need to reschedule your appointment and you could be charged a cancellation fee.

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Payment and Policies

Payment and Policies

What Can I Expect Throughout My Therapy?

During your first visit, your therapist will conduct an initial evaluation to assess your current condition, and this could include:

  • Objective findings and testing
  • Establishing a recommended treatment plan
  • Establishing a home-exercise program
  • Determining overall health goals
  • Discuss the length and frequency of treatment plan

Your diagnosis and general condition determine your treatment, but your appointments may consist of:

  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Manual therapy
  • Modalities (electrical & thermal)
  • Review of your home-exercise program and goals
  • Patient education
  • Functional/activity-specific exercises
  • Massage therapy

Patients will be asked to complete a health status questionnaire at admission, mid-treatment and discharge. We want to rate your ability to do your usual activities and measure your satisfaction as a patient. This information is shared with your treating clinician who can adjust your sessions to provide you with the most effective treatment plan.

How Can I Share My Comments?

Your feedback is important to us, so we can see how you are progressing and how you compare to other patients with similar injuries. During your care at our clinics, we ask you to complete a questionnaire. We do this during your first appointment, midway through your treatment plan and when you are discharged.

The questionnaire is key to our partnership with Focus on Therapeutic Outcomes Inc. (FOTO®), a database for rehabilitation outcomes to measure and compare our patients’ results with national data from thousands of clinics and millions of patients across the United States. Access to and analysis of this data enables us to improve the way we treat you to get you better as efficiently and effectively as possible.

We also welcome your questions and feedback at any time during your treatment. We take patient feedback seriously and appreciate your input.

What Is the Billing Process?

Benefits for physical or occupational therapy may differ from standard medical coverage. We encourage you to review and verify your benefits and coverage with your insurance provider prior to your first appointment.

After you have scheduled your appointment and provided your insurance information, we will, as a courtesy, verify your health insurance treatment benefits. Please note that insurance quotes are not a guarantee of benefits or coverage.

This is our billing process:

  • Your therapist will forward your daily charge to our Billing Center.
  • The Billing Center submits these charges to your insurance company for reimbursement.
  • Athletico receives the payment within 30 to 60 days.
  • Athletico provides you with an invoice after insurance reimbursement or a decision on services rendered (within 30 to 60 days).

Insurance quotes are not a guarantee of benefits or coverage. All co-pays are expected at time of service.

Please visit our online and in-clinic patient bill-pay page or contact our Billing Center at 630-575-6250 if you have questions or would like a record of your charges.

Although it may take 30 to 60 days to receive a bill for your deductible and co-insurance, all co-pays are expected at time of service. Clinics have access to your balance in real time, they can answer any questions that you may have.

How Can I Pay My Bill?

We offer multiple ways to pay your bill. You may submit your payment by mail, online, telephone or in our clinic.

How Will I Know If My Insurance Is Covered?

We accept all major insurance plans. A list of our in-network insurance plans are available online so it is easy for you to see if your plan is covered. Our team also verifies your insurance coverage and communicates a quote of therapy benefits from your insurance carrier before you start. Please note that verification of coverage is only a quote and not a guarantee of payment. We encourage you to call your insurance company and also to verify benefits. If asked, you can inform your insurance carrier that our place of service/type of location is classified as “service place eleven” which just means office setting. To assure the highest level of coverage, we encourage you to review any possible limitations and requirements your plan might have. Some common requirements and limitations include: co-pay required by the patient at the time of service, referrals required from primary care physicians (PCP) at the initial visit, therapy visit limitations per calendar year, pre-certifications, deductible and co-insurance obligations. We are here to help you gain a clearer understanding of your insurance coverage and claim procedures so you can get the treatment you need. If you don’t find your insurance provider on the lists below, please contact the Billing Center at 630-575-6250.

What Do I Do If I Disagree With How My Insurance Company Has Processed My Claims?

If you have questions regarding the amount of payment or non-payment on your claim, call your insurance company for an explanation. If the insurance company finds that an error was made, note the information and whom you talked with at the insurance company. Request an anticipated payment date and ask if they need anything to complete processing. If the insurance company feels the bill was paid correctly and you still disagree, find out from the insurance company what you need to do to file an “appeal” with them. Filing an appeal will not guarantee that the insurance company will pay more on your bill, but the claim will be reviewed for reconsideration.

What Are Your Payment Policies For Additional Services?

Select locations offer massage therapy, personal training and fitness center memberships. Full payment must be made before your service begins. If you have an existing patient account, we can bill you directly, or we can accept a credit card, check, money order, InstaMed and CareCredit.

What Is Your Refund Policy?

We do not offer full or partial refunds for unused services and packages — including massage therapy, personal training and fitness center memberships.

What Is Your Cancellation Policy?

If your plans change and need to cancel your appointment, please give us 24 hours’ notice — otherwise, you may be charged a cancellation fee. We recommend that you schedule appointments far enough in advance to ensure you receive the time slots you need.

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