As people grow older, the desire to move comfortably and live independently remains important. Physical therapy offers a specialized solution to help older adults move better, stay active, and enjoy a fulfilling life.


Here Are Some Ways Physical Therapy Can Help

Enhance Mobility: The core of physical therapy lies in maximizing movement and functionality to help adults move around safely and perform everyday tasks with ease.

Restore Balance: Improved balance and coordination reduces the risk of falls and allows adults to move safely at home and in their communities.

Alleviate Pain: Many conditions can lead to discomfort and pain. Physical therapists provide techniques to help ease pain and enhance quality of life.

Improve Joint Health: With specialized exercises, physical therapists manage joint pain and improve joint flexibility for better movement. Gentle stretching and mobilization techniques can help increase flexibility and prevent stiffness.

Increase Strength: As people age, maintaining muscle strength becomes vital for performing daily activities independently. Also, strong muscles are essential for maintaining balance and stability.

Talk with your doctor to find out how physical therapy could benefit you!

Aging is a natural and inevitable part of life, and with the right mindset and lifestyle choices, it can be a time of continued vitality, joy, and fulfillment. Healthy aging isn’t just about adding years to your life; it’s about adding life to your years. Below are a few tips to help older adults embrace healthy aging and make the most of this exciting chapter.



Physical, occupational, and speech therapists play important roles in helping adults live vibrant, independent lives. By addressing physical limitations and functional challenges, older adults can experience improved quality of life, increased independence, enhanced well-being, and a greater sense of purpose. Talk with your doctor to see how therapy could benefit you.

As we age, several changes occur in our bones that can affect their structure, density, and overall health. It’s important to note that while these changes are common, they are not inevitable. Taking steps to improve and maintain bone health is essential for older adults to preserve their independence, prevent fractures, and enjoy a higher quality of life.


Can Therapy Help You?

Physical and Occupational therapy can help individuals improve bone health. Physical therapists prescribe specific exercises that target bone health including weight-bearing exercises, resistance training, and functional movements. Occupational therapists focus on proper body mechanics to help reduce the strain on bones and also provide assistive device training such as canes and walkers to ensure individuals can move safely and independently.

Your body is made up of approximately 60% water. Water is essential for nearly every bodily function and helps regulate body temperature, lubricates joints, and aids digestion and nutrient absorption. Maintaining proper hydration is important for all ages, but is especially important for seniors.

As we age, our bodies become less efficient at regulating water and electrolyte balance. This can lead to a higher risk of dehydration. Also, older adults are more vulnerable to heat exhaustion and heat stroke due to changes in the body’s ability to regulate body temperature. Finally, as people age, the ability to sense thirst may decline. This can make seniors less aware of their body’s need for water and result in inadequate fluid intake.

How much water do you need?

The amount of water a person should drink daily can vary depending on factors such as age, sex, activity level, climate, and overall health. A common goal is to drink around 8 cups or 64 ounces of water daily for adults.

Tips to Increase Your Water Intake:

By making small changes to your daily routine, you can increase your water intake and stay hydrated.

  • Drink water with each meal
  • Try calorie-free, fruit-flavored water
  • Carry a reusable water bottle with you all the time
  • Add flavor to water to make it tastier
  • Set reminders on your phone to drink water
  • Eat more water-rich foods: lettuce, celery, and watermelon

Physical and occupational therapists can help promote hydration and overall good health through functional training, environmental modifications, education, and support. Talk with your doctor about the benefits of physical, occupational, and speech therapy.

Speech-Language Pathologists, also known as SLPs, provide evaluation and treatment for individuals that might be experiencing trouble with speech, language, cognitive function, and/or swallowing disorders.

Patients who suffer from a progressive, degenerative neurological disease such as Dementia or Parkinson’s Disease, may require an SLP screen or evaluation to assure the maximum quality of life and independence are achieved. SLPs are able to alter the environment, provide education to family and staff, and develop cueing strategies to facilitate an optimal setting in which the patient can comfortably complete their daily tasks and enjoy leisure activities.

How Can a Speech-Language Pathologist Help?

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms below, talk with your doctor about the benefits of therapy with a Speech-Language Pathologist.

  • Difficulty swallowing (coughing, choking, excessive throat clearing)
  • Odynophagia (painful swallowing)
  • Trouble finding words to communicate your wants and needs
  • Difficulty understanding and/or expressing your thoughts
  • Memory problems or difficulty focusing
  • Soft, breathy voice making it difficult for people to hear and understand what you are saying

Occupational Therapists help people of all ages to live more independent and productive lives.


How Can An Occupational Therapist Help?

Occupational therapists can help aging adults remain active and live well despite limitations. Some of the main benefits of participating in occupational therapy for older adults include:

  • Improved Quality of Life
  • Restored Function
  • Improved Activities of Daily Living
  • Reduced Risk for Falls
  • Improved Self-Confidence & Happiness
  • Increased Awareness of Safety Precautions in the Home
  • Continued Independence

Outpatient physical, occupational, and speech therapists work together to help keep older adults living independently in their home as long as possible.  Our licensed, highly skilled therapists are specialists in treating a wide range of conditions in older adults including, but not limited to:

    • Arthritis
    • Back, Shoulder, and Neck Pain
    • Facial & Jaw Pain
    • Cognitive Decline
    • Balance Disorders
    • Inner Ear Problems
    • Hand Injuries & Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
    • Knee & Leg Injuries or Pain
    • Neurological Disorders
    • Speech Disorders
    • Swallowing Disorders
    • Sports-related Injuries
    • Work-related Injuries


Could I Benefit from Outpatient Therapy? 

Is pain affecting the daily activities in your life?

Are you having problems with your balance?

Do you feel that you’ve lost some strength?

Are you having trouble getting dressed, reaching for a sock or bathing?

Are you having problems with comprehending and/or expressing your thoughts?

Do you have trouble swallowing or choke easily?


If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, contact your doctor to discuss the benefits of physical, occupational, and speech therapy.  Proactively addressing challenges you may be facing will help ensure you are living a healthy and happy life.

CMS is offering a cue card to assist providers in coding the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-2 to 9) as referenced in the coding guidance for D0150. This resource is intended to be utilized during the Patient Mood Interview as a supplemental communication tool that provides a visual reference to assist patient selection of symptom frequency.

The cue card is offered in two sizes which can be viewed or printed and is available in the Downloads section of the HH QRP, IRF QRP, and LTCH QRP Training pages.

Click here to download the Cue Card.

CMS announced that the Five-Star Preview Reports are available on January 23, 2023.

To access these reports, select the CASPER Reporting link located on the CMS QIES Systems for Providers page. Once in the CASPER Reporting system, select the ‘Folders’ button, then select ‘My Inbox’ or the Inbox beginning with ‘LTC’ and the state abbreviation followed by a facility ID. The reports only remain in the QIES system for a short time, so please save and/or print these reports for your records.

Nursing Home Care Compare will update with the Five Star data on or around January 25, 2023.

Important Note: The 5-Star Help Line (800-839-9290) will be available from January 23 through January 27, 2023. Please direct your inquiries to if the Help Line is not available.

CMS has a substantial influence on how telehealth services are delivered and paid. Specifically, CMS sets forth regulation for payment and coverage requirements.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG)’s 2023 Work Plan will provide significant oversight on telehealth services including the impact of PHE flexibilities. The OIG reviews will provide objective findings and recommendations that can further inform providers about telehealth. The oversight intent is to ensure that the potential benefits from telehealth are realized for beneficiaries.

We got you! Here are our top 5 takeaways:

  1. Due to the PHE, actions have been taken to allow practitioners to provide telehealth services.
  2. Telehealth may offer an alternative method for necessary care to be safely delivered to residents in appropriate situations. This flexibility has been extended through CY 2024 and is no longer tied to the end of the federal PHE.
  3. If a beneficiary denies the use of telehealth, services will not be performed via this delivery mode.
  4. Creating an environment for successful telehealth services can make a huge difference in the efficacy of treatment. More guidance can be found here.
  5. Document, document, and then document some more. Proper documentation of the validity of the use of telehealth is imperative. Review entities will be looking for documentation as proof that the “right” steps were taken when performing telehealth (and other) services. Document any interdisciplinary collaboration, beneficiary consent to the delivery mode, the clinical appropriateness of the delivery mode, and that other options for safely delivering services in the direct presence between the resident and staff have been exhausted.


Need a Powerful Therapy Partner? Contact Amanda Green, Executive Director of Strategic Development for information about our contract therapy partnerships.