McFarland Clinic

Frequently Asked Questions

Text Size
Smaller Larger
Skip physician search

Find a Doctor

Expand Search
Criteria Search
Name Search
Main Content

What is physical therapy?

Physical therapy is a healthcare profession that helps individuals whose movement and function are adversely affected by aging, injury, disease or environmental factors. Together with the help of physical therapists, these patients work toward the goals of relieving pain, as well as developing, maintaining and restoring maximum movement and functional ability. The cornerstones of physical therapy treatment are therapeutic exercise, manual therapy and functional training.

What do physical therapists do?

Physical therapists are experts in restoring movement and function. After examining patients, therapists create comprehensive programs focused on total body care, injury prevention, as well as safe and timely returns to work, life or sports. Depending on the needs of a particular patient, physical therapists may mobilize a joint, provide soft tissue work to a muscle, or perform a corrective exercise to restore normal movement patterns and function. In addition to this hands-on care, physical therapists educate patients on preventing injury and performing home exercises. 

What is an occupational therapist / hand therapist?

The Occupational Therapists at McFarland Clinic focus on rehabilitation from the elbow to the fingertips. Some occupational therapists are Certified Hand Therapists (CHT). We help patients restore normal hand function for work, school, recreation, and daily living. We treat hand, wrist, and elbow injuries, disorders, and post-operative conditions. More information about Occupational Therapy / Hand Therapy.

Do I need a prescription / referral?

A prescription for physical therapy is not required in the State of Iowa except by some government insurances (e.g. Medicare, Medicaid). We will work with you and your primary care provider to obtain a prescription if it is needed.

How do I schedule an appointment?

Call 515-663-4886 to schedule an appointment at one of McFarland Physical Therapy's nine Central Iowa locations. All clinics have extended hours to meet the demands of your busy schedule. When you call, please have your physical therapy prescription (if needed) and insurance card available. Having the insurance card will allow us to verify your insurance benefits and provide you with an estimate of coverage.

Will the physical therapist communicate with my healthcare provider?

McFarland Physical Therapy recognizes that open, honest communication among the members of your healthcare team (you, your therapist, your healthcare provider, etc.) is essential to making your rehabilitation experience a success. As a result, the physical therapist will send your healthcare provider a complete written report that includes the findings of the initial evaluation, the assessment of the problem and a detailed description of the treatment plan. 

The physical therapist will continue to update your healthcare provider with written progress reports each time you are re-evaluated and before each follow-up appointment (it is important to let your therapist know if you have an upcoming appointment with your healthcare provider).

Additionally, the therapist will not hesitate to contact your provider by phone if he/she has a specific concern or question. At the end of your treatment, the physical therapist will send a final report to your health care provider with information regarding your status at the time of discharge from physical therapy. 

What type of follow-up is offered?

At McFarland Physical Therapy our professional staff emphasizes the importance of continuing your treatment with a home exercise program. Your therapist will design an at-home program for you and provide detailed instructions. This will allow you to continue the progress you made while in therapy and avoid further injury or setbacks. We are partners in your recovery, so even after discharge if you have questions, call us, and we will be more than happy to help you with any questions or needs you may have. 

© 2019 McFarland Clinic. All rights reserved.