The Next Normal: Going to physical therapy

The Next Normal: Going to physical therapy
Telerehab (Source: KLTV)

TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Physical therapy offices are taking extensive measures to keep their patients safe and satisfied. Some offices are even bringing physical rehab facilities to you using technology to have your physician at your fingertips.

When you walk into UT Health East Texas Rehabilitation for your appointment, you’ll be screened at the door for COVID-19 symptoms. Administrator of Rehabilitation Hospital Laurie Lehnhoff-Watts tells us they “ask the questions, we take the temperatures and anybody who doesn’t pass any of that doesn’t get in.

And that’s only a few of the ways this facility is working to assure every patient and staff member is as safe as possible. She goes further to explain how they’ve “done what all healthcare organizations should be doing. We’re social distancing, we are doing extra efforts for cleaning, all of our staff check-in before they come to work and do a screening.”

But some physical therapy clinics like TheraNow are taking a much more extensive approach to social distancing. You don’t ever have to come within six feet of anyone.

Dr. Ashok Gupta tells us about how TheraNow has a web and mobile application -- “instead of having to actually have to come for an evaluation, or a treatment and followup session, 100% of the session will be done remotely. You’ll be one on one with one of our therapists who are well trained in doing an online assessment and doing your care.”

You create an account at theranow.com or download the app. Once you’ve customized your patient care, your physician can track how well and how often you’re doing your physical therapy, then they use that data for your next appointment.

Dr. Gupta says, “for ages, physical therapy has been considered a hands-on profession requiring people to be in the same room and being able to touch and feel. If you actually want to change that experience and take it online, just a video session will not actually cut it. So we had to develop this specialized technology over time and now we’ve mastered it.”

Even if you’re interested in telerehab but don’t have the necessary technology, the TheraNow program offers to lease out devices to patients as long as they return it after their therapy is complete.

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