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Bots May Increase the Human Connection in Physical Therapy

Posted by Brian Spence on Nov 17, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Bot.jpgPhysical Therapists have a very difficult job. They help patients facing disability get or keep their lives on track. This not only requires skill but it requires trust.

Voluntarily moving an injured body part can feel like a betrayal to yourself. That is why having continuity of care with a physical therapist is important. Trusting that the person who is asking you to move knows both what they are doing and understands your pain is vital to the patient/therapist network of trust.

What are bots doing in this environment?

It seems a bit odd to put a bot in such an intimate position and yet, with bots doing everything now, it was only a matter of time before their human interaction in medicine left the operating room. They have actually proven themselves as a useful tool in physical therapy.

Machines are not taking the place of the physical therapist. They are simply maximizing the effectiveness of the therapist's work. How are they doing this?

Bots can aid by:

  • Having a patient do a greater number of exercises.
  • Measuring precisely how those exercises are affecting the injury be it positive or negative.
  • Adjust their assistance in exercises to get maximum results.
  • Show on paper how the injury is progressing.

A physical therapist can:

  • Work with patients on an injury.
  • Discuss how the patient feels they are doing and provide different exercises to help in areas that both patient and therapist see as needing improvement.
  • Create a level of trust that is necessary for people at a time of weakness.

By connecting on an emotional level it also allows for a patient to express pain in other areas. Injuring a leg does not rule out a secondary injury. A bot merely focuses on the one area. In other words, having a bot focused solely on the injury affords the therapist time to take a look at the full picture. This can prevent a bigger problem down the line like needing surgery.

If interested in learning more about this and related topics, visit the Healthcare section of our blog.


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Staffing Plus is a premier healthcare staffing firm that provides temporary, per diem, temp-to-hire and permanent Staffing Solutions for Behavioral Health, Education, and Healthcare settings. We have leveraged decades of experience to assist organizations with the challenges of managing their HR and Recruiting needs.