Forms & FAQ

In an effort to save paper, printer ink and energy, Homer Physical Therapy provides the following documents for you to read online. You may choose to print only the final document to sign that you have read, understand and agree all policies regarding your care.  All documents are in PDF format and require Adobe Reader or another PDF reader to view.  Click this link for a free version of Adobe Reader.

New Client Forms

Forms for Insured Clients

Forms for Self Pay Clients

Referral Form – If you are interested in receiving physical therapy services at Homer Physical Therapy and your insurance carrier requires a referral, print this form off, take it to your physician and advocate for the option of physical therapy intervention. Remember, it is YOUR choice where you go for physical therapy services. Medical personnel cannot choose for you. Questions? Call us! 235-3410.

FAQ

Q: What will happen in my first physical therapy session?

A: You will be asked to arrive 20 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment to fill out a series of questionnaires that will give your physical therapist background information about the problem you are seeking help with, your life-style and other health-related issues. You will also be expected to complete paperwork for our business office so that we know you have familiarized yourself with our basic operational and billing procedures.

The physical therapist will look over your paperwork, but will want to also hear “in your own words” what brings you in for treatment. Depending on your issue, this may be brief or take the entire hour we have scheduled for your first appointment. Our goal is to provide you with some form of treatment during the first appointment, but at times, for complex conditions, getting a detailed history can be invaluable in the treatment process.

The treatment rooms are private and the physical therapist will often have you change into shorts and tank top or sports bra. The therapist will conduct a physical evaluation typically including gait assessment, range of motion, strength, coordination and balance. The physical therapist will use manual palpation skills (gently applied hand / finger pressure) to assess areas of movement restriction, pain, swelling, and numbness. Other forms or evaluation may also be indicated for a specific problem. The physical therapist will explain all methods prior to performing. The therapist will discuss their findings with you and typically provide some type of treatment involving education, may perform “hands-on” treatment or provide some type of exercise intervention.

Q: I am seeing a physical therapist for problems with urinating. How will my physical therapy evaluation differ from someone seeing a PT for knee pain?

A: Because we operate with the belief that the human body is an amazingly complex and integrated system, all of the assessment techniques used for “a regular” PT session will occur. The PT will then describe what other types of assessment may need to be conducted to provide the most complete picture of your condition so an effective treatment plan can be developed. This may involve discussion about your bathroom habits and voiding patterns, pain or sensation complaints in the area of the genitalia, sexual function information and menstrual / reproductive history (if applicable).

Typically, a pelvic exam including visual assessment of the area involved will be performed and if appropriate, a digital pelvic exam both externally and internally will be performed with the goal of assessing muscle tightness and development; coordination of musculature; tissue tenderness, mobility and integrity; and swelling. Throughout the exam, the client, if they desire, are taught about the findings of the exam with verbal feedback. Many clients find correlating this verbal information with visual awareness of seeing our pelvic model very helpful and reassuring in the exam and treatment process.

Q: What do I need to bring to my first appointment?

A: You need to arrive 20 minutes early or have completed the appropriate paperwork by printing it off of this website. You need to bring the following:

  • Your picture ID.
  • Your method of payment which includes a current insurance card if you are using insurance.
  • Physician referral form if your insurance requires it.
  • A current medication and supplement list.
  • Recent imaging reports and / or copies of the images if they pertain to the condition you are being seen for.

Q: Why don’t you enroll in my employer’s “In-network” insurance plan?

A: Homer Physical Therapy’s goal is to provide the best quality service at the best possible price. Participation in “In-network” contracts limits our ability to practice our profession in a manner that provides the quality service Homer Physical Therapy is known for. We realize the cost for those with insurance that offers a price reduction for working with an “in-network” provider is an important consideration in selecting your provider. We would suggest speaking to friends, family and neighbors about the value of our services and make a few phone calls locally about the actual out-of-pocket costs for physical therapy in the Homer area. Despite not getting an “in-network” rate at Homer Physical Therapy, you will find our base price is highly competitive to “in-network” rates offered elsewhere. Questions? Call our office staff for more details.

Q: My insurance didn’t pay my whole bill after I paid my co-pay, co-insurance and my deductible. Do you “write” this off?

A: No. Homer Physical Therapy offers highly competitive base rates for our services that are considered well within “usual and customary” rates. Many health care providers artificially inflate their billing amounts to “maximize” what the insurer will pay and then excuse the client from paying the remaining balance. We believe providing a good service at a reasonable rate. It is your responsibility to pay any amount your insurer does not pay.

Q: How do I know what my insurance will pay?

A: The best method is for YOU to call the number on the back of your insurance card and ask what your policy covers. You can ask specifics like:

  • Does my policy cover out-patient physical therapy services?
  • How many appointments does my policy cover?
  • Is there a limit on how many billable units can be billed in one day?
  • Is there a time limit for the duration of treatment for a particular problem?
  • Do I need a physician’s referral? (And if you are using the services of a Naturopathic doctor, is this credential adequate?)
  • Do I have a deductible? If so, how much has been met?
  • Do I have a co-pay or co-insurance?
  • If my PT indicates that massage therapy will be beneficial, does my policy cover this?
  • What is the maximum amount this policy will pay for the following treatment and evaluation codes: 97001, 97112, 97140, 97110, 97116, and 97124?
  • Are there any other limitations on my policy that will affect my care?

Homer Physical Therapy makes every effort to contact each and every insurer by the end of the first appointment to ask similar questions to facilitate a positive experience at our facility. Unfortunately, insurers often are not as willing to provide these answers to the provider as they are to the beneficiary.

Q: Does Homer Physical Therapy bill insurance?

A: Yes with certain limitations. We DO NOT bill Medicaid, Fisherman’s Fund, Denali Kid Care. We bill only primary and secondary insurances. Tertiary insurances are your responsibility.

Q: What is your cancellation / missed appointment policy?

A: Homer Physical Therapy requires 24-hour notice for cancellations. If we are not open and you need to cancel your appointment, simply leave your name and number on our phone message system at 235-3410. Homer Physical Therapy offers courtesy reminder calls the work day prior to appointments. Failure to listen to the message on the part of the client, failure of family to pass messages to client, or inability of Homer Physical Therapy staff to reach the client or make the courtesy call is not adequate reasoning for missing an appointment as all clients are offered/provided with a printed out list of all scheduled appointments. Any appointment missed without 24-hours cancellation notification will result in a $50 fee that is the financial responsibility of the client, not the insurer. If a client cancels or misses more than three times during a plan of care, the client will be asked to discontinue services until a time that physical therapy is deemed a personal priority and the plan of care can be fully implemented.

Q: I am coming to Homer Physical Therapy from out-of-town. What do I need to know?

A: First, we value the effort you are making in coming to Homer Physical Therapy for our specialized services. We strive to make available two hour appointments for all clients coming from Soldotna/Kenai and beyond in order to maximize your travel time and effort. It is YOUR responsibility to speak with your insurance company to ensure they will cover this length of appointment. Please speak to Homer Physical Therapy staff prior to the initiation of therapy regarding specifics about longer appointments.

Check out our “Partners” page for recommendations on where to stay while you are in town.

Q: I have Medicare. Why can’t I get an appointment immediately?

A: We have a Medicare waitlist due to the fact that Medicare reimbursement is so low and the paperwork surrounding use of Medicare is so involved and cost-generating that we must monitor our number of active Medicare clients to enable us to remain financially sound as an independent small business. This issue has nothing to do with the Affordable Care Act and complaints need to be directed to Alaska’s U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators.

Q: I have Medicare, but I don’t want to be on a Medicare waitlist. Why can’t I pay cash for my appointment?

A: Physical therapists cannot “opt out” of the Medicare program and are bound to participate in the Medicare program if they treat individuals that are covered by Medicare (i.e, if a physical therapist sees someone 65 or older, they are required to submit the claim to Medicare and cannot directly take cash payment for services.) Individuals covered under Medicare will be evaluated and if the condition is deemed “not medically necessary”, (training for a marathon, etc.) the client may pay cash for services not covered by Medicare after completing certain paperwork. Unfortunately, in most cases we do not know if your condition falls into “medically necessary” or not until the evaluation is completed, therefore we see Medicare recipients on a first-come first-serve basis as required by law. Due to significant limitations in reimbursement through Medicare, we are financially limited in the number of Medicare beneficiaries we can see at one time.  This issue has nothing to do with the Affordable Care Act and complaints need to be directed to Alaska’s U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators.

Q: I have an insurance that is from another state. Can I use this?

A: Yes, you may, but you will be required to pay any balance that remains if you insurance company does not pay Alaskan rates. Our billing is based on usual and customary charges for the state of Alaska. Many insurance companies from Outside do not pay at this rate. Your employer may be part of a plan that is managed Outside and the difference in coverage may be shocking.  It is your responsibility to obtain this information as you will be expected to pay any remaining balance. Complaints about this policy should be directed to your employer that utilizes insurance that does not provide adequate coverage for the state their employees reside in.

Q: Why don’t you take Medicaid or Denali Kid Care?

A: The paperwork and reimbursement challenges exceed the ability of an independent small business to effectively overcome. We are mandated by law to accept Medicare if we see anyone age 65 and older. We do not, by law, have to accept Medicaid or Denali Kid Care.

Q: Will I always see the same physical therapist?

A: It is our goal to provide continuity of care and we believe having the same therapist is one step in achieving this goal. We do, however, occasionally move clients from one therapist to another when we want a “different set of eyes” on a problem.

Q: I worked with one therapist for one problem and want to see only them again. Why can’t I pick who I work with?

A: The physical therapists at Homer Physical Therapy all have similar views of treatment, but have different interests and specialty training that makes one therapist better equipped to address certain issues over another. Our scheduling staff is very familiar with the skills each physical therapist brings to the clinic and places clients accordingly to maximize treatment outcomes. If, upon being seen by the physical therapist, there is indication that your situation would be better addressed by another therapist, a switch will occur.

Q: Does Homer Physical Therapy take Worker’s Compensation insurance?

A: Yes, with the exception of out-of-state policies/injuries.  Alaska’s worker’s compensation medical reimbursement rate is standard for Alaska only.  Outside rates vary from state to state and can pay less than costs for reimbursement.