The five national organizations that comprise the Orthotic and Prosthetic (O&P) Alliance stand in strong opposition to any direct-to-consumer delivery model for the provision of custom prostheses or orthoses as it circumvents the necessary, direct working relationship between the patient and an appropriately credentialed O&P clinician as part of an overall plan of care.
Advances in technology have fueled a growing trend toward direct-to-consumer models. Some of these models omit the orthotist or prosthetist entirely and rely on the patient or their caregiver to perform critical tasks they are not trained to do. Even when there is some oversight from the manufacturer through some form of remote communication, this model cannot replace the need for an educated and trained prosthetic or orthotic clinician to assure that the prosthesis or orthosis is appropriate, safe, and effective.
Click to view the full statement, including frequently observed characteristics of direct-to-consumer models, alarming trends and recommendations from the Alliance.