When is a Physical Therapist Assistant Not an Assistant?
A physical therapy assistant usually works in a healthcare or physical rehabilitation setting under the supervision of a certified physical therapist. He is directly in charge of assisting the therapist that treats patients who are recuperating from different types of illnesses or injuries and who need physical therapy of some kind. Short of treating patients, the assistant does all the other things such as prepping the treatment area, helping the patients to move and other tasks that alleviate the job of the physical therapist himself.
Physical therapy assistants can work in many places which include ambulatory health care facilities, state hospitals, private hospitals, nursing centers and residential care facilities. Assistants also work for a physical therapist who has an independent practice.
But now a physical therapist assistant can also act as the therapist himself if, after the proper training, he is at the receiving end of telerehabilitation for physical therapy products such as the TUTOR system. Patients who have suffered from stroke, MS, CP, brain/spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s, upper or lower limb surgeries and other limb disabling diseases or injuries can begin to use tele health systems if they have recovered sufficiently to be discharged from an inpatient setting or if they live too far away from a rehabilitation facility.
The newly developed HANDTUTOR and its sister devices (ARMTUTOR, LEGTUTOR and 3DTUTOR) have become a key system in neuromuscular rehabilitation that can be implemented through telerehabilitation. These innovative devices implement an impairment based program with augmented motion feedback that encourages motor learning
intensive active exercises and movement practice.
The HANDTUTOR, ARM TUTOR, LEGTUTOR and 3DTUTOR consist of a wearable glove and braces that detect limb movement showing the patient how much active or assisted active movement they are actually doing. The rehabilitation software uses exclusive games to set a new target for this movement in terms of the patient’s ability to move their limb. The devices then measure the limb movement and give feedback on the success of the patient in trying to gain this new movement. It allows the patient to understand which effort is more successful in moving their affected limb again. In this way the TUTOR system provides exercises that are challenging and motivating as they allow for repetitive and intensive exercise practice.
The HANDTUTOR, ARMTUTOR, LEGTUTOR and 3DTUTOR are now part of the rehabilitation program of leading U.S. German, Italian, French, UK and other foreign hospitals. They are fully certified by the FDA and CE and are available for children as well as adults. See WWW.MEDITOUCH.CO.IL for more information.