FAQ: Physical Therapy

What is a physical therapist?

Physical therapists are licensed by the state, specializing in therapy programs for musculoskeletal injuries and disorders, sports injuries, post-operative rehabilitation, and massage therapy.

What is an occupational therapist?

Occupational therapists are licensed by the state and specialize in the treatment of the upper extremity and work injuries. The services provided by occupational therapists include patient education, joint range of motion, adaptive techniques, splinting, and workplace evaluations.

Do I need to see a Southern California Orthopedic Institute physician to have therapy at a Southern California Orthopedic Institute facility?

No, you do not need to be treated by a Southern California Orthopedic Institute physician to have therapy at one of the Southern California Orthopedic Institute facilities.

What insurance does Southern California Orthopedic Institute accept? How will I know if my insurance covers therapy?

We accept most insurance carriers. We also accept Medicare. Call us with your insurance information, and we will verify your coverage.

Is Southern California Orthopedic Institute's physical therapy a Medicare provider?

Yes, we accept Medicare.

What are the hours of operation?

The Southern California Orthopedic Institute physical therapy facilities are open Monday through Friday, from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. We are also open on some Saturdays.

What do I need to bring with me?

Bring your physical therapy referral/prescription and a copy of your insurance card.

Are there locker rooms or showers at my therapy location?

Some of our locations have locker rooms and showers. Please see your location's page for more details.

How should I dress?

You should wear or bring comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. The clothing worn should allow for easy movement, but it also must be modest and appropriate for a family setting. During therapy, patients should wear athletic shoes or at least flat safe shoes. Patients will not be allowed to perform exercises in the gym while wearing any type of heeled shoe.

How long will my visit take?

Expect to spend about 45 – 60 minutes on your initial visit. Follow-up visits will vary depending upon your plan of care.

Can I bring my children with me to my appointment?

Minors under the age of 18 who are not patients are not allowed in the treatment/gym areas and may not be left unattended in the waiting areas. Therapy staff is not allowed to monitor or watch a child during a parent/guardian appointment. Anyone bringing a child to an appointment will be required to reschedule for a time when they can arrange for childcare.

What happens on my first visit?

During your first visit, you can expect to be evaluated by your therapist, who will assess your current diagnosis, complaints, and impairments. Additionally, we will set your goals with you for physical therapy and develop a treatment plan.

How do I make an appointment?

To make an appointment at one of the Southern California Orthopedic Institute physical therapy facilities, please call the number listed on the locations pages (Van Nuys, Bakersfield, Valencia, Simi Valley, or Westlake) under "Physical Therapy." You can also look at your appointment details or cancel your appointment through MyChart.