SC Supreme Court overturns ban on physician-employed physical therapists: 3 notes

Practice Management

Physician practices in South Carolina are now able to employ physical therapists, after the South Carolina Supreme Court overturned a previous ruling, which had banned the employment of physical therapists by physicians.

Here's what you need to know:


1. Two orthopedic surgeons and a physical therapist recently sued the South Carolina Chapter of the American Physical Therapy Association and the State of South Carolina over the previous ruling.


2. The court ruled that the previous ban was anti-competitive and deprived physicians of their right to practice medicine in the best interests of their patients, according to Gerald R. Williams Jr., MD, president of American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.


3. AAOS had been fighting the ban for more than a decade. In December 2004, the society released a position statement that read: "Physical therapy is integral to providing high quality care for musculoskeletal disease and injury. Orthopaedic surgeons are best qualified to prescribe clinical and cost-effective use of this service."


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