In 2007, Phelps Memorial Hospital opened a 22,000 square foot Physical Therapy facility that has given patients and staff much needed breathing space to go about the business of body recovery. Aside from the obvious advantage of keeping patients from getting backlogged as they wait for a machine or a mat table, the upgrade is accompanied by an equally important human component in their road to recovery.
We’re able to bring in more staff and more clinical expertise – thus giving us a wider pool of knowledge to pull from, says Chief Physical Therapist, Joanne Gelsi. But that’s not
A 20 by 40 foot therapeutic pool provides a bridge for patients who can’t withstand the initial pain of a PT regimen. “Hopefully,” she says, “the pain will diminish and they can be progressed on land.”
From there, they can take the therapy out on their own to the community pool, which is central to what Phelps does - whether by land or by pool side. Coming solely to therapy twice a week is not going to help you manage your situation in the most effective manner, she says, and applying the therapeutic education supplied by Phelp’s therapists is essential.
Additionally, one must traverse their natural environments to suit the new circumstances of their conditions. For instance with some thing like neck pain, patients have to learn to properly position their posture in order to diminish the symptoms. It’s about teaching ergonomics, she says.
On the active side, sports injuries certainly occupy a good slice of what the center sees on a daily basis, and
Post operatively, therapists help control scarring and not only return the invasive area back to normal but also keep the close proximities up to speed. For example, after rotator cuff surgery, she says, the therapist must work the shoulder because unsanctioned movement could disrupt the tear that’s trying to heal.
Otherwise, with Strokes, arthritis or spinal injuries, therapist at Phelps keep themselves connected and updated on the knowledge that each holds. “We talk all the time and compare treatment techniques,” she says.
And that is derived from more than just what comes their way in the daily duties. “All the therapists on their own attend classes in areas they are interested in and anything they need to brush up on,” she says.
But regardless of the private rooms that give patients a feeling of security, machines that are cutting edge or the pleasant surroundings that carry their own healing appeal, it still mostly comes down to something quite apart from the enhancing amenities, according to Ms. Gelsi. “The skill of the therapist is number one – that’s the biggest tool we have,” she concludes.