PRS Clinical Culture

By: Tom Pennington, P.T., CEO

We have all had that one teacher who above all others understood us and whose passion, competence, persistence, and demand for excellence inspired and challenged us to perform our best. Mine was Thelma Gray at West Broadway Elementary School. At first I felt she didn’t like me--finally I realized she cared about me to perform my best.

When I saw my first outpatient in a rural hospital in Kentucky in 1983, I was trying to remember everything I learned about the elbow. Applied anatomy, in regard to the ulnohumeral joint, radiohumeral joint, the superior radioulnar joint, and the head of the radius in regard to the annular ligament. As I was visualizing the bony articulations, I was imagining the ligamentous and supportive structures—ulnar collateral ligament, radial collateral ligament, and annular ligament: The journey of the ulnar nerve via cubital tunnel. As I palpated the surrounding musculature insertion points, I remembered tennis elbow, golfers elbow, bicipital insertion, etc. All three reflexes (biceps, triceps, brachioradialis) intact, 2+ and symmetrical. Dermatomes normal to light touch, pin prick, heat, and cold. Normal skin color with mild effusion. Goniometrics taken in flexion, extension, supination, and pronation both actively and passively. Close attention to end feel. Bilateral strength tests performed and ruled out referred pain from cervical spine, shoulder, and wrist. Enough special tests to write a good book chapter in the next elbow evaluation textbook published by Saunders. Negative Tinel’s sign and Wartenberg’s sign questionable. Forty-five minutes later, I began my first official treatment. An hour and a half later, my patient was more than ready to go. Jim, my P.T. director, former Clinical Instructor, and friend asked me if the patient felt better and proceeded to ask additional information about my patient. I remember not being able to answer those personal questions, but I proceeded to wear Jim, Click, PT, out on all of the objective data I collected. Jim, in his simple but wise way reminded me that the elbow I just treated was attached to a real person and that next time I should get to know that person.

The PRS clinical culture has taken Jim’s advice to heart. We get to know our patients and each therapist has committed to making a life changing and lifelong commitment to their patients. It is a professionalism and commitment that goes beyond the clinic and employment boundaries. It combines and embodies 4th grade teacher Thelma Gray and CI/Director Jim Click. Knowing and acknowledging the person first before addressing the restricted anatomical deficit. Then add a touch of passion, competence, persistence, and strong desire for our patients reaching excellence in their outcome. PRS layers all of this in a private practice culture of servant leadership—placing the needs and desires of our patients and clients above our own. Our goal is to combine the best qualities of a teacher, coach, cheerleader, friend, and professional competence of a physical or occupational therapist. PRS desires to strive for continuous improvement in a deliberate and intentional manner in regard to clinical culture.

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Physicians Rehab Solutions
12123 Shelbyville Rd. Suite 100, #250
Louisville, KY 40243
760 Campbell Ln. Suite 106-169
Bowling Green, KY 42104
Phone: 855-244-1053

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