October is Physical Therapy Month, or PT Month for short. It is a time for all physical therapists to embrace and celebrate our profession! Here at Magee, we have the opportunity to assist people at their time of need. The rehabilitation process can be a strenuous time for both patients and families. A successful recovery must be approached in a holistic fashion, recovery physically, psychologically, and socially from a traumatic event. Simply put, we serve as a “course correction” for many of our patients and their families. I am proud to be a physical therapist at Magee because of the pride, commitment, and the compassion that we as a team demonstrate on a daily basis for our patients.
PT Month is also a time when we give back the community as a profession. Physical therapy is unique in that there are multiple settings in which physical therapists work. Between inpatient rehab, acute care, home care, outpatient, and school-based pediatrics, it is pretty hard to avoid us! The fact that our profession is so diverse makes our commitment to community outreach programs and community education very important. This year, the PT staff at Magee Rehabilitation Hospital made a special effort to reach out and support the Chester Community Physical Therapy Clinic (CCPTC) at Widener University. This clinic offers pro-bono services to the community of Chester, PA. The clinic serves those who are uninsured, under-insured, or those who have exhausted all other healthcare options. This clinic provides an essential service to the community and has provided a source of health and wellness education and rehabilitative services to those who would have otherwise gone without care.
What makes the CCPTC different from other university clinics is the fact that it is entirely student run! Apart from a licensed physical therapist on site for supervisory purposes, all patient care and administrative functions are performed solely by Widener University physical therapy students. This early exposure to real-life patient care is an incredibly unique learning opportunity.
Throughout the month of October, many Magee physical therapists have donated their time outside of working hours to supervise at the CCPTC. There were a total of six scheduled visits made to the clinic over the course of PT month, with two Magee therapists on site to supervise. While at the clinic, the therapists functioned as licensed supervisors, providing guidance to students as they designed treatment plans, advising students on clinical reasoning behind interventions, and assisting with documentation. The mixed-diagnosis population at the clinic can be challenging to those with limited experience, so the guidance and clinical knowledge of the Magee physical therapists on site was warmly welcomed by the students, the clinic supervisory staff, and the Widener University PT faculty.
PT month may be drawing to a close, but the idea of celebrating our profession should be a theme that is carried on throughout the year. Each day we have the opportunity to better the lives of those around us. One small action can make all the difference for someone in need. I would like to personally thank all who assisted in the community outreach program at Widener University. The strength of our profession comes from a commitment to excellence and REACHing to provide the highest quality of care.