Proposed legislation would allow licensed physical therapists to practice in other states without having to obtain an additional license

11/28/2016 03:54 PM

FLORENCE – Licensed physical therapists would have the ability to practice in other states without having to obtain another license from that state if physical therapy licensure Compact legislation is passed during the upcoming 2017 session.

The Physical Therapy Compact would dictate that participating member states would recognize licenses from other member states as long as the physical therapist’s license is in good standing and is in compliance with the rules and regulations of the state in which he/she is practicing.

Kentucky Board of Physical Therapy Chair Tina Volz says one big advantage of the Compact is the fact that it includes mandatory reporting information so that the public and licensing officials can rapidly be notified if any physical therapists have been disciplined for fraud and abuse.

“Currently, it’s encouraged for states and jurisdictions to report to that disciplinary database but, in fact, all states do not participate,” Volz said. “Kentucky does, and has for quite some time, but this Compact situation would require any member state to report that to the disciplinary database, and I think that that’s going to be a huge and important thing for the citizens of Kentucky.”

Ed Dobrzykowski of the Kentucky Physical Therapy Association, believes that another advantage is that people living near state borders will have better and more access to physical therapy services by physical therapy providers licensed in other states.

“We frankly need more PT’s, and using the PT’s that we have in more and creative ways will offer some assistance,” Dobrzykowski said.

Physical therapists who want to be part of the Compact and practice in another state will be required to pay a fee to participate, but the fee will be significantly lower than the cost to obtain a full license in another state.

The Compact would create a commission that would enact rules relating to the cost and administration of the Compact. However, the commission will not and cannot alter the laws governing the scope of practice for physical therapists in each state.

Any physical therapist practicing in Kentucky under a Compact privilege must adhere to Kentucky’s statutory and regulatory standards. Likewise, any Kentucky physical therapist practicing in another state must adhere to that state’s guidelines.


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