If you or someone you know has benefited from dry needling (also known as intramuscular needling), please call or write your legislative representative by Wednesday, 2/13/2019 and tell them your story (click here to go to the bill page then click on the comment on this bill tab).
The Physical Therapy Association of Washington (PTWA) has submitted a bill (HP 1260 & SB 5642) to officially place intramuscular needling into the physical therapy scope of practice. Prior to the Attorney General’s opinion in 2016, physical therapists were practicing this technique in a “gray zone” of being neither legal or illegal. The bill would put into statute an endorsement for physical therapists to practice this technique.
That bill is at risk of not getting heard this year because the Chair of the Health and Wellness Committee in the House, Rep. Eileen Cody, believes that patients/consumers are NOT requesting this work so she’s not going to put it on the hearing calendar. Please help us dispel this incorrect notion by calling your representative today.
Here are some talking points you can have with your representatives:
- Intramuscular needling is a therapeutic, non-pharmacological intervention used to treat pain and movement dysfunction.
- 43 states as well as all branches of the military allow physical therapists to practice intramuscular Washington, although it’s often a progressive state, is one of only seven states where PTs are unable to perform this. As a constituent and healthcare consumer, it is very frustrating to not have access to the same level of care I could get in other states.
- Intramuscular needling is an evidence-based practice that has been proven to reduce pain and improve movement. In addition, research has shown that it lowers the cost of care to patients and the medical system by reducing the amount of therapy needed to get better.
- Given the number of people looking for alternatives to opioids to address their pain, this is a low cost, low risk technique that can help them achieve their goals.
- Currently, intramuscular needling can only be performed by physicians, nurse practitioners and naturopathic physicians, all of whom cost more and are not using the technique in the context of movement rehabilitation as PTs do.
- The bill in the house, HB 1260, would establish the most rigorous training standards in the country for PTs, at 300 hours of training and supervision compared to the average of 27 to 54 hours in other states.
Most importantly, tell your representative your personal story/experience and ask them to tell Rep. Cody you want this technique and you want this bill to be heard in this legislative session.