Developing an Industrial Athlete Program
By Alexandria Zitnik
Being innovative and constantly adapting your practice to better serve a broader population means pushing the envelope, looking outside the box, and occasionally utilizing your resources outside of your clinical site.
As a physical therapy professional, you are ideally suited to be an educator, coach, and motivator. The industrial athlete population should be in your wheelhouse.
An industrial athlete program is built to integrate the resources an employer provides with the resources the physical therapy profession offers in order to inspire true change in both life and work! Developing a program like the industrial athlete can support your practice in four ways:
- Capitalizing on cash pay or flat fee for service opportunities
- Diversifying your payer mix
- Educating the workforce and promoting musculoskeletal health
- Marketing your professional expertise and the benefits physical therapy has to offer
What is an industrial athlete program? It is a comprehensive wellness, safety, and prevention program that utilizes physical therapists or athletic trainers as the expert mentor.
COMPONENTS OF AN INDUSTRIAL ATHLETE PROGRAM
- Educational classes
- Preventative care and assessments
- Custom exercise programs based on job requirements
- Work conditioning and return-to-work programs
BENEFITS FOR THE EMPLOYER CONTRACTING YOUR SERVICES
- Controlling health care costs
- Reduced medical claims
- Fewer lost days of work
- Increased productivity
- Improved Employer and Employee moral
WHAT WE’VE LEARNED FROM COVID-19
There is a need now! Employees are coming back from furlough deconditioned and more susceptible to injury. Overall, employee health is important when combating a virus like COVID-19 and we have the opportunity to assist in this. Utilize this opportunity to use a telemedicine platform for virtual check-ins with employer groups or injury screens as a foot in the door to eventually receive paid contract services.
Alex Zitnik is the Director of Business Development for IRG Physical & Hand Therapy in Mill Creek, Washington. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.