Being a doctor of physical therapy for more than 10 years in the state of New York makes me one of the pioneers of the profession. As I watch new physical therapy graduates and interns perform their duties and responsibilities, I have noticed quite a bit of changes from the perspective of the field. As I started working as a physical therapist, it was pure paper and pen files of patients that gets stacked up as they accumulate. It may be an issue of accessibility of charts but there is zero chances of system going down or internet issues. There are also a lot of changes in terms of equipments and treatment options for patients which in my opinion makes a lot of sense and some doesn't make sense at all. I was able to come across physical therapists that provided me knowledge and wisdom when I started and I would also love to do the same to the new generation of DPT's. Unfortunately, it is getting more and more difficult in terms of performing our practice and getting reimbursed by insurance companies whether it is skilled nursing facility, hospital or outpatient. New laws inhibits therapists to be compensated well in performing our profession of helping our patients get back to their own feet. On the other hand, newer advancement of technology and computing makes charting and treating patients less difficult. New doctors of physical therapy should master the art of multitasking. As I am typing this right now, I am also treating patients and making notes and documentation. It is totally different doing treatments in the school setting in front of a teacher compared to seeing patients, doing notes at the same time in the facility. Aside from being physically ready to show the patients how to do things right functionally and helping them feel better, it is also a must to be mentally prepared as well. Being able to apply skills and knowledge learned in school to multiple patients at the same time and still answer questions on the dot separates a good therapist to the rest. Lastly, new DPT's should be able to have the confidence to instill what they want the patients to do and learn as they provide treatment and exercises for their health and well being.
Any insights to the topic please keep us posted. Keep moving everyone.