- What do you like
about physical therapy/why did you choose physical therapy?
I chose physical therapy because I want to help people. I
looked at other healthcare professions and they just did not offer what I was
interested in. I like fitness and wellness. I felt like as I shadowed PTs they
treated the whole person not just an illness/disease/problem. As I have been on
my internship it has been a testament that I have picked the right career. I
have been able to help people get a better overall wellness. Sometime a
listening ear while exercising seems to make a world of difference in peoples
lives. I love spending time with people everyday. Most other healthcare
professionals just do not get one on one like PTs do.
- What type of
facility were you in, where was it located, and a brief background?
My internship was located in South Austin, Texas. Being
in a Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) sounded like such a drag at first but I was
surprised how much I enjoyed it. Essentially, I was able to work with long-term
(people who can no longer care for themselves and need 24 hour help) and
short-term (knee/hip replacements, fractures, spinal surgery, etc. but just not
quite ready to go home from the hospital) residents.
- What was your
biggest surprise/learning curve at your internship?
Having confidence in what I know. I feel I have learned
so much in school thus far but sometimes it was hard to talk with patients and
be sure of what I was saying. With simple cases I felt I could walk in
confident but with more complex cases or agitated patients I felt a little more
Something else that took me off guard was when patients
seemed angry or agitated. I can understand why they might be upset; many of the
patients just went through a traumatic event or surgery. When I did my first
evaluation the patient was screaming and yelling. Honestly it freaked me out
but I made it through and felt so accomplished afterward.
- What was your
case/work load like during your internship?
I covered between 70% and 90% of my CI’s caseload on any
given day depending on who we were supposed to see. My CI slowly worked me into
more and more patients as well as note taking. It is tricky to manage time
wisely to see all the patients and get all the notes done but it was not crazy;
it was definitely do-able. Of course my least favorite part of the workload was
the note taking but again totally do-able.
Just want to add be confident but not cocky. If your CI
is any thing like mine take careful note of their advice. Listen to your CI,
they have great insight and advice they have been a PT longer than you. Also,
go into your internship open minded, I did not think an “old folks home” would
be any fun but it was a blast. I don’t know if it is what I want to do for a
career but I am not opposed to it.