• Bismarck Clinic
  • 1000 Tacoma Ave. Suite 500
  • Bismarck, ND 58501
  • 701.751.3001
  • Horizon Clinic
  • 4535 Northern Sky Dr. Suite 2
  • Bismarck, ND 58503
  • 701.354.1200
  • Beach Clinic
  • 61 South Central Ave. Suite 6
  • Beach, ND 58621
  • 701.872.3001
  • Steele Clinic
  • 110 West Broadway
  • Steele, ND 58482
  • 701.475.2911

1.Does insurance cover physical therapy?

The majority of services we provide are covered by most if not all insurances. In the rare case that a service not covered by insurance was considered, your therapist would disclose this prior to administering treatment for your approval.

2.Does my insurance cover dry needling?

Dry needling has become a very popular treatment in our area for treating various muscle injuries. Unfortunately, it is not recognized as a proven treatment by most insurances and therefore is not covered as a physical therapy treatment. As an active patient, we still incorporate it into your treatment. If you are seeking only dry needling, then we also have out of pocket payment plans for those services.

3.How much will I have to pay out of pocket for each session?

This will vary according to your specific insurance plan. Several plans require an office copay for each visit. If your deductible is not met, the majority of the visit will go towards that. If your deductible is met, you may be responsible for a portion, which is referred to as your “co-insurance”. Our well-trained office staff will discuss the details of your specific insurance plan and how it will affect you financially.

4.Can I go to any physical therapy clinic I choose?

Yes. North Dakota is referred to as an “open access” state meaning patients can elect to go to any physical therapy clinic they’d like even if their doctor’s office recommended a specific clinic or made an appointment with their affiliated clinic.

5. Do I need a doctor’s referral for physical therapy?

Most insurances in North Dakota do not require a referral from your physician with the exclusion of Medicare and Medicaid programs which do require a referral.

6.What should I expect on my first visit?

During your first visit you can expect the following:

  • Arrive at your appointment with your paperwork completed (you can download it from our website - see the paperwork or forms link) or fill out paperwork when you arrive.
  • You will provide us with your prescription for physical therapy, if applicable.
  • We will copy your insurance card.
  • You will be seen for the initial evaluation by the therapist.

The therapist will discuss the following:

  • Your medical history
  • Your current problems/complaints
  • Pain intensity, what aggravates and eases the problem
  • How this is impacting your daily activities or your functional limitations
  • Your goals with physical therapy
  • Medications, tests, and procedures related to your health

The therapist will then perform the objective evaluation which may include some of the following:

  • Palpation - touching around the area of the pain/problem. This is done to check for the presence of tenderness, swelling, soft tissue integrity, tissue temperature, inflammation, etc.
  • Range of Motion (ROM) - the therapist will move the joint(s) to check for the quality of movement and any restrictions.
  • Muscle Testing - the therapist may check for strength and the quality of the muscle contraction. Pain and weakness may be noted. Often the muscle strength is graded. This is also part of a neurological screening.
  • Neurological Screening - the therapist may check to see how the nerves are communicating with the muscles, sensing touch, pain, vibration, or temperature. Reflexes may be assessed as well.
  • Special Tests - the therapist may perform special tests to confirm/rule out the presence of additional problems.
  • Posture Assessment - the positions of joints relative to ideal and each other may be assessed.

The therapist will then formulate a list of problems you are having, and how to treat those problems. A plan is subsequently developed with the patient's input. This includes how many times you should see the therapist per week, how many weeks you will need therapy, home programs, patient education, short-term/long-term goals, and what is expected after discharge from therapy.


How long will my appointment be?

Typically your first visit will last approximately 1 hour and each following visit will range anywhere between 45-60 minutes.

7.How long will I have to go to physical therapy?

Because everyone heals differently and every injury is unique, it is difficult to predict the duration (how long you attend physical therapy) and the frequency (how often you attend physical therapy over a specific time span) until your initial evaluation. However, a new study published in 2017 showed that patients who attended physical therapy 2 visits per week showed a 92% successful discharge rate compared to those who averaged 1.67 visits per week which showed a successful discharge rate of 69%. So, anticipating attending physical therapy at least 2 times per week would be in the patient’s best interest to maximize their benefit from treatment, but ultimately this will be determined by you and your physical therapist following your first visit.

Choose Your Path!