How Dual Licensure Benefits Your Patients
When you’re working with a patient, you spend many hours developing a relationship and understanding their needs and goals.
If you determine that orthotic intervention may be necessary to improve outcomes, you might wonder if an orthotist will fully understand your goals for the patient and if you will be able to work together to find the best solution for treating their challenges.
At Transcend, we collaborate with a diverse patient care team, which includes orthotists, physical therapists, and others. This leads to a holistic approach and unparalleled service for your patients.
Chris George, PTA and CO
Chris George is an example of the value we place on multiple clinical perspectives. Currently a regional manager based in our Fort Wayne office, he was a physical therapist assistant for nine years before becoming an orthotist. When he meets with physical therapists, his background immediately encourages open communication.
In addition, his whole team has experience collaborating with PTs. “Our early treatment process was to establish ourselves with the PT clinic and treat the patient right there with the therapist,” Chris says.
Today, Chris’s clinical team members still visit other clinics, and sometimes PTs stop in at the Transcend office for patient appointments. Together, a PT and Chris’s team:
- Assess the patient
- Identify the challenges and obstacles the patient faces
- Discuss opportunities, goals, and treatment options
What Can Two Perspectives Offer?
Chris evaluates patients from two perspectives. This lets him choose from a variety of treatment modalities and goals while deeply analyzing biomechanical muscular issues.
“As a therapist, I can identify the muscle and then the integration of the muscle that’s causing the problem,” Chris says. His in-depth understanding of muscle groups allows him to perform a more thorough evaluation of each patient.
He uses the orthotics toolkit too. “Orthotists tend to dive deep into gait analysis, identifying gait problems easily,” he explains. Chris studies subtle clues in the way a patient walks.
Chris collaborates with physicians who appreciate input from both perspectives, and Chris’s dual licensure allows him to ask questions from both disciplines, building a highly nuanced evaluation.
How Chris Works With Physical Therapists and Others
Each patient is unique. One may respond quickly to orthotic braces. Another may require a treatment plan involving conversations and insights from multiple disciplines to find an innovative solution. For complex cases, Chris may involve:
- An orthotist
- The patient’s PT
- An occupational therapist
- A speech therapist
- The family and their goals
The process often looks like this:
- Chris begins the process by discussing long-term goals for the patient with their PT, asking questions about their current progress and future treatment plans.
- He offers orthotic recommendations based on the outcomes they discussed.
- He supports the treatment plan by helping the patient make progress toward those goals.
Physical therapy and bracing together can help patients who are significantly delayed in developmental goals to transition to standing, take their first independent steps, and sit up and keep their head up while engaging with their therapist.
This is critical for cases involving kyphosis or scoliosis deformities that prevent a patient from interacting well. Bracing and therapy together aid in their development and allow them to practice skills and movements that strengthen their muscles and improve their quality of life.
Helping Each Other
Our driving mission at Transcend is to achieve life-changing outcomes for each patient we see. By tapping into the perspectives of orthotists, PTs, and others, we can combine our professional strengths to build a successful plan.
Chris’s dual licensure helps him to accelerate patients’ progress through his wide base of knowledge. If you’re interested in working with him or his team, contact our Fort Wayne, IN, office at (260) 203-2959.