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The Nova Scotia Physiotherapy Association wholeheartedly agrees on the need to optimize the roles of health professionals. Black mentions the role physiotherapists can play in the assessment of muscle and joint problems. Around the world, the concept of first-contact physiotherapy is rapidly growing, as is the need for expertise in the area of muscle, bone and joint assessment.
For example, in the U.K., physiotherapists work with physicians, assessing patients with common conditions such as lower-back or neck pain, fractures of the extremities, tendonitis, sprains or strains.
Patients arriving at a clinic with such conditions are first assessed by a physiotherapist who may recommend non-medicinal treatment such as exercise, or refer to the physician for further evaluation.
To further this role, the designation of an advanced practice physiotherapist is also growing. This designation gives physiotherapists the ability to request diagnostic testing, among other abilities, to lessen the burden on other professionals. Physiotherapists can work as a first-contact clinician in an emergency room or clinic, assessing patients with suspected fractures of the extremities, confirming their diagnosis with an X-ray, and providing appropriate treatment recommendations and/or referrals. This all occurs while they collaborate with physicians, nurses and other health-care team members.
Optimizing the roles of health professionals reduces wait times, provides patients with the best treatment options, and uses all health professionals to their full ability and expertise. Optimization of every team member’s role is integral to a well-functioning health-care system. The intention is never to take away from another health profession; instead, it allows for greater collaboration and the best care for the public.
Stephen Richey | May 5, 2019 | Reply
Gordon a.... | April 27, 2018 | Reply
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