The Role of the Physical Therapist at Home: Movement Is Medicine


Interim Healthcare of Sarasota

For more information about the author, click to view their website: Interim Healthcare of Sarasota

Posted on

Aug 04, 2023


Florida - Sarasota, Bradenton & Charlotte Counties

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Physical therapists (PT) are an integral part of a patient’s home healthcare team, particularly for patients who are recovering from a surgery or illness that resulted in the loss of function or mobility. Physical therapists play a huge role in improving the quality of life for patients who are healing at home and learning to regain form and function, they can live independently and return to performing the activities they enjoy.


October is observed as National Physical Therapy Month, and it’s the perfect time to celebrate our Interim HealthCare physical therapists, who are such an important part of our home healthcare team. 


What does a home health physical therapist do?

Home health physical therapists visit patients in their homes to provide a wide range of rehabilitative services. Some common responsibilities of a home physical therapist include:


  • Performing hands-on therapy using appropriate therapeutic exercises, gait training, and functional mobility training for certain orthopedic and neurological conditions
  • Instructing patients on the safe and effective use of adaptive devices and durable medical equipment (DME)
  • Teaching patients how to effectively transfer from the bathtub, chair and bed
  • Conducting balance training and providing instruction for safe stair-climbing
  • Performing home safety evaluations

Why become a home health physical therapist?

Many patients who are recovering from a serious illness, injury or surgery can benefit from home health physical therapy, especially if they aren’t able to leave home due to medical restrictions. A career as a home healthcare physical therapist can be very fulfilling and rewarding.

A few benefits of working as a home health PT include:


  • Enjoy building relationships with patients and their families.
  • Compensation is typically very rewarding and competitive for home health PT positions
  • Experience a less stressful environment as compared to hectic outpatient or inpatient settings.
  • Experience the fulfillment that comes from making a difference in the lives of others every day.
  • Enjoy a flexible work schedule with assignments to fit your needs.

Why work for Interim HealthCare?

So, you’re a physical therapist, and you’ve decided that home health is the right place for you. Why should you choose to work for Interim HealthCare? Here are just a few reasons physical therapists choose Interim over other home healthcare agencies.

Interim HealthCare has been around for 50 years. And, we have a great reputation. 

We are the nation’s first home care company. As a leader in our industry, we’ve been matching skilled healthcare professionals and compassionate caregivers like you to clients and patients in their homes since 1966. While we are national in scope, we operate through 300+ locally-owned offices that are passionate about providing the kind of personalized care you can’t find anywhere else.

You can work with top home healthcare professionals. 

At Interim HealthCare, we are a family of healthcare professionals and caregivers focused on improving the lives of the individuals we serve. As a physical therapist, you will be working with an entire healthcare team that is focused on the same goal–providing the very best care for our patients and clients. We only hire the best providers to care for our patients. So when you work for Interim HealthCare, you are working with the best in the business.

You can earn competitive compensation and benefits.

To keep you at your best, we offer some of the most competitive benefits and compensation packages in the industry. Just a few of the benefits our home healthcare providers enjoy include:


  • Flexible Schedule
  • Rewarding assignments
  • Positive work culture
  • Steady hours
  • Training & growth opportunities
  • Tuition discounts
  • Competitive pay
  • Autonomy

You can experience a healthy work-life balance

At Interim HealthCare, work-life balance is a top priority. Whether you’re a full-time physical therapist with our company or picking up shifts here and there, we will work with you to ensure your work schedule is not overwhelming.

You were made for this.

At Interim HealthCare, we are a family of healthcare professionals and caregivers focused on improving lives through home-based care. It’s who we are. If you feel called to serve, help, support, care and connect with others, you bear the DNA of a home care professional, too. Don’t take our word for itlisten to our healthcare professionals share their stories. Then click here to check out the job opportunities with Interim HealthCare in your area.

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How to Find a Good Physical Therapist for Parkinsons Patients

  Exercise is necessary for everyone! Research has shown that regular exercise with the help of a physical therapist can improve the quality of life for Parkinsons patients. As the second most common neurological disorder, Parkinsons disease affects a lot of patients and their families. Many of these families are seeking in home physical therapy services to help their loved ones manage their symptoms.Knowing your loved one is getting the best physical therapy at home can help put your mind at ease. Receiving care from the comfort of home gives your loved one the ability to live their life to the fullest. To ensure your loved one is getting the care they need, here are the steps you should know to make sure youve found a good physical therapist.Seek a Licensed PractitionerOnly a licensed physical therapist or physical therapy assistant should be providing in home care to your loved one. Remember, state licensure is required in the U.S. for physical therapy practices, and each state has an agency that oversees regulations. If you have questions about licensing or would like to verify that your loved ones physical therapist has a license, you can do so by contacting the in home care provider or checking the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy.Know Who You Need on Your TeamLicensed physical therapists and physical therapy assistants perform many of the same basic responsibilities, and both can be of great help to patients. However, their level of education and responsibilities do differ. Understanding the duties and education requirements to be a practicing physical therapist or physical therapy assistant can help you feel confident when selecting a caregiver you can trust to provide great care for your loved one.Heres the breakdown of the educational requirements to be a physical therapist or a physical therapy assistant and their responsibilities:EducationPhysical Therapist (PTPostgraduate professional degreesMost have a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)DPT degree generally requires prerequisites like anatomy, biology, chemistry, and physiologyPhysical Therapist AssistantGenerally, states require an associates degree from an accredited physical therapy programPrograms involve first-hand clinical experience and academic courseworkCertification and LicensingPhysical Therapist (PTStates require PTs to have a physical therapist license to practiceMust pass the National Physical Therapy Examination or state-administered examSome PTs choose to be certified in a clinical specialty, and need to pass additional examsPhysical Therapist AssistantMust graduate from an accredited physical therapy assistance programNeed to have passed the Physical National Physical Therapy ExamSome states require an additional state-administered examDutiesPhysical Therapist (PTDiagnose and deliver care to individualsDevelop rehabilitation plans for patientsTeach stretches, exercises, and hands-on therapyPhysical Therapist AssistantDetermine the level of patient injuries and report findings to a physical therapistEducate the patient about what to do post-treatmentHelp with exercises and stretchesInstruct patients how to use equipment and devices Ask About the Therapists Experience with ParkinsonsAll licensed physical therapists should be able to assist Parkinsons patients, but some are more prepared than others. During an interview, you should ask the home care provider or physical therapist about their experience with Parkinsons disease. For example, ask the physical therapist if they have a history of treating people with neurological disorders, have completed a residency or fellowship in neurological physical therapy, or have achieved additional certifications for Parkinsons care.Here are some examples of certifications that are available for physical therapists for Parkinsons that you should ask about:LSTV BIG ProgramLSVT LOUD ProgramPWR!Moves Trained TherapistParkinsons Disease: A Practical Approach to Evaluation & Treatment for the Physical TherapistMake Sure Your Therapist is Up-to-DateSince there is no standard treatment for Parkinsons disease, treatment is based on your loved ones symptoms. New methods for how to manage the symptoms of Parkinsons are constantly on the horizon, so you should ask the physical therapist how they stay up-to-date and how they use best practices to provide care.Good physical therapists will be able to answer these questions by naming scientific journals they read, courses they have taken, and certifications they have received. Great physical therapists will be able to answer your questions and also explain to you how their up-to-date knowledge and methods will benefit your loved one.Find a Compassionate PersonAside from their training and credentials, you should look for a physical therapist who has compassion and fosters good working relations with the whole care team, especially you and your loved one. You want a physical therapist who not only knows how to handle the specifics of Parkinsons treatment, but also takes account of the whole person, not just their specific condition or injury. A good physical therapist will listen to your loved ones needs, follow through with the plan of care, and keep you updated on their treatment.If your loved one has a physical therapist you are unhappy with, you have the right to choose a new one. In the U.S., you and your loved one have the right to contact a physical therapist for in home care without a physicians referral and select one that is right for your needs. If you are interested in finding a new trained and certified physical therapist or physical therapy assistant to provide in home physical therapy, we can help.Contact us to get in touch with a licensed and compassionate physical therapist for Parkinsons care.

Common Physical Rehabilitation Therapies for Seniors

Common Physical Rehabilitation Therapies for SeniorsAs we get older, life can throw some challenges our way that make it harder to stay active and do the things we love to do. Exercising, participating in outdoor activities or even performing simple household chores can sometimes result in injury, even if youre doing your best to prevent it. You could be playing tennis one day, and when you get home, youve suddenly got pain in your elbow that lasts for weeks. Or maybe you were raking your garden when you realized your back was giving you trouble.At CC Young, we are committed to providing a wide range of physical rehabilitation therapies that can strengthen and offer you relief. Our comprehensive continuum of care includes outpatient, inpatient and home healthcare. Whether you recently came home from the hospital following a surgery, or youre dealing with pesky back or knee pain, our experienced teams of occupational, speech and physical therapists are here to help you get back on track. Our goal is to provide seniors the therapeutic support they need to regain their independence and transition back to daily living activities smoothly.Outpatient and Inpatient Rehab DefinedInpatient  The physical, occupational, or speech therapy care you receive while in the hospital to prepare you to transition home.Outpatient  When recovering from an injury or illness, you may need additional therapy when you leave the hospital. This may take place in your home or a rehab facility, with the goal being to help you heal and return to daily living activities.Why is Rehab Important?Sometimes people try to avoid physical therapy and rehab, believing they will be fine without it. Its important to follow the instructions of your doctor or medical team and get the care your body needs early on. Physical and occupational therapists have a toolbox of ways to get you back to full functionality. Skipping this step could result in permanent damage to your joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments and possibly your overall posture, resulting in more pain and suffering in the long run.Common Physical Rehabilitation Therapies for SeniorsWorking with team of rehab experts who specialize in therapies for seniors can give you a better chance to prolong your longevity and comfort levels over time. Here are some therapy options you can expect in a community like CC Young.WalkingSometimes simple movement is the best therapy. This is especially true if your range of motion is limited. The gentle, natural movement of walking is one of the best ways to condition your body to perform again, whether youve been through physical trauma or just overdid it in your backyard.StretchingIf you have a muscle spasm or even just tight muscles, stretching is a great way to alleviate pain and stiffness. Our physical rehabilitation therapies include guided stretching sessions to help you loosen up sore muscles without injuring them further.Resistance TrainingAnother therapy that can help you regain your former strength is resistance training. Using weights and resistance bands, our therapists will guide you through the best exercises to help relieve your pain and rejuvenate your muscles so you can be active again.Aquatic TherapySome exercises are best performed in the water. Water takes pressure off your body, removing the aggravation of gravity from aching joints and muscles, and warmth amplifies that effect.At CC Young, we have an aquatic therapy program that is designed for the needs of older adults. Our pool is at a therapeutic temperature, and our deep well allows patients to float and stretch their joints to give relief. With our support and classes, you can do exercises in the pool that you cant do on land, and you can also avoid the risk of falls and injuries more easily while in the water. Often, people come to the pool in pain, and through aquatics therapy, they find relief more quickly than expected.Strength TrainingYou might be tempted to shy away from lifting weights when injured, but with the help of our highly skilled therapists, strength training can remain a part of your routine. This therapy will help your muscles maintain or regain their strength as you heal.Balance and Coordination ExercisesSome injuries, especially leg, ankle and foot injuries, can have a negative effect on your balance and coordination. Our therapists will use all the tools and techniques at their disposal to help you regain balance and coordination, while helping to prevent falls and further injuries.Flexibility and Range of Motion ExercisesPain and injury can limit your range of motion, making everyday tasks difficult. At CC Young, we have a wide variety of techniques that can help you regain your flexibility.Cardiovascular ExercisesBelieve it or not, getting your blood pumping is a crucial component of the healing process, as well. We integrate cardio exercises into our physical rehabilitation program to facilitate whole body wellness.Functional TrainingThis step is a turning point in your physical therapy journey. Functional training allows you to apply the techniques and tools youve learned in other therapies to real-life situations. By practicing activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing, navigating the kitchen and moving around the house, we can assist you with everyday tasks. Functional training takes concepts like strength, range of motion, balance, and pain management, and translates them into practical movements that you can practice at home.At CC Young, our Rehabilitation and Aquatics Center offers physical, occupational and speech therapies that allow you to regain the strength and independence you need to return home safely and with confidence. The mock kitchen, laundry room, restroom, and car allow patients to practice daily living activities. Additionally, the outdoor Sensory Garden simulates a community environment, complete with grass, curbs and yard for training purposes.For more than 97 years, CC Young has been of service to seniors who need comprehensive support. Our five-star rated community is comprised of caring senior rehabilitation experts, who can help you or a loved one gain the strength and confidence needed to transition back to normal life.November 29, 2023 | CC Young Senior Living

Up And Out On A New Knee

Shell Point resident Dotty Morrison retired early at 56, and soon after joined the Shell Point Photo Club, Village Church Choir, and more. I like being challenged to learn new things, and love meeting people, shared Dotty.A fast-paced, go-getter by nature, Dotty slowed down for a total knee replacement in early 2016, followed by physical therapy at the Shell Point Rehabilitation Center. To stay focused and positive during recovery, Dotty set a short term goal: walking on a four-hour hiking and birding excursion organized by the Caloosa Bird Club.Dotty discovered how many dimensions of wellness can be incorporated into one activity as she trod the nature boardwalk at Lee Countys Six-Mile Cypress Slough Preserve just a few months later. This birding enthusiast combined community and social, natural environment, educational, physical, spiritual, and even emotional dimensions, as she experienced the satisfaction of her hard-earned accomplishment.Down the road, reinforced by her ongoing rehab program, Dotty plans a physically challenging trip to the Galpagos Islands. Considered one of the worlds foremost destinations for wildlife viewing, its isolated terrain shelters a diversity of plant and animal species. Dotty hopes to take her new knee for a long walk to observe this unique ecosystem firsthand.If you would like to learn more about Shell Points outpatient rehabilitative therapy program, which helped Dotty get back on her feet, contact the Rehabilitation Center at the Larsen Pavilion at (239) 454-2256.

Local Services By This Author

Interim Healthcare of Sarasota

Home Health 3231 Gulf Gate Dr., Ste. #202, Sarasota, Florida, 34231

At Interim HealthCare, we understand how important it is to have someone you can depend on when you or someone you love wants to stay at home to maintain the highest level of health and independence. Our mission is to improve people's lives and that is what we do every day. With a broad range of home care expertise, our trained professionals offer comprehensive home care and supportive services that are cost-effective and highly personalized. Whether you need help for a short time after you come home from a hospital stay or you need assistance in doing some of the tasks of daily living, Interim HealthCare is here for you and your family. Were ready to listen to what you need and to talk with you about the many services and care we can provide. If you are looking for people you can trust, please call us first. When it matters most, count on us.

Interim Healthcare of Sarasota

Non-Medical 2201 Cantu Court, Sarasota, Florida, 34232

At Interim HealthCare, we understand how important it is to have someone you can depend on when you or someone you love wants to stay at home to maintain the highest level of health and independence. Our mission is to improve people's lives and that is what we do every day. With a broad range of home care expertise, our trained professionals offer comprehensive home care and supportive services that are cost-effective and highly personalized. Whether you need help for a short time after you come home from a hospital stay or you need assistance in doing some of the tasks of daily living, Interim HealthCare is here for you and your family. Were ready to listen to what you need and to talk with you about the many services and care we can provide. If you are looking for people you can trust, please call us first. When it matters most, count on us.