Soft sell to patients

Soft sell to patients


  1. “Your clients do not know what you know”


Man…this statement says a lot! We are highly educated (some more than others of course) and our patients come into the session with varying levels of education regarding either their health or the specific ailment. The part that irks me though is when the patient DOES know more than my students. We dedicate so much time to teaching our patients that I am frustrated if my patient now knows more than the student working with the patient.


Don’t be offended, but I am going to talk to you like an 8 year old, until you’ve earned the right for me to talk to you like a teenager. I will talk to you like a teenager until you’ve earned the right to be spoken to like a college student and so on and so forth. I have to ensure that you know what I am trying to teach you. If that means that I have to dumb it down a little at first…so be it. Senor Sosnowski once said that a smart person can always climb down the ladder of intelligence, but an ignorant person can’t just climb up the ladder. They have to put the work in order to get to a level of intelligence on this topic. I will be the first to say that I suck at a lot of things…physical therapy just isn’t one of them.


  1. “simply calls for a direct and simple correlation that is made between your intervention and the positive outcome achieved by your patient.”


I expect people to improve. With patients that I don’t expect to improve, I am over educating that patient on day one. This is few and far between though. I expect patients to improve and in the end, I will never act the hero, but more like the facilitator. When you understand that you are “in charge” of your symptoms, then I become your cheerleader. (I’ve worn heels, but won’t go so far as to wear the skirt…one day I’ll tell the story of the heels).




Quatre T. Why they buy: Because You Have connected the Dots. IMPACT June 2016:11.


Author: Dr. Vince Gutierrez, PT, cert. MDT

After having dedicated 8 years to growing my knowledge regarding the profession of physical therapy, it seems only fitting that I join the social media world in order to spread a little of the knowledge that I have gained over the years. This by no means is meant to act in place of a one-one medical consultation, but only to supplement your baseline knowledge in which to choose a practitioner for your problem. Having completed a Master of Physical Therapy degree, the MDT (Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy) certification and currently finishing a post-graduate doctorate degree, I have spent the previous 12 years in some sort of post-baccalalaureate study. Hopefully the reader finds the information insightful and uses the information in order to make more informed healthcare decisions. MISSION STATEMENT: My personal mission statement is as follows: As a professional, I will provide a thorough assessment of your clinical presentation and symptoms in order to determine both the provocative and relieving positions and movements. The assessment process and ensuing treatment will be based on current and relevant evidence. Furthermore, I will educate the patients regarding their symptoms and their likelihood of improving with either skilled therapy, an independent exercise program, spontaneous recovery or if the patient should be referred to a separate specialist to possibly provide a more rapid resolution of symptoms. Respecting the patient’s limited resources is important and I will provide an accurate overview of the prognosis within 7 visits, again based on current research. My goal is to empower the patient in order to take charge of both the symptomatic resolution and return to full function with as little dependence on the therapist as possible. Personally, I strive to be an example for family and friends. My goal is to demonstrate that success is not a byproduct of situations, but a series of choices and actions. I will mentor those, in any way possible, that are having difficulty with the choices and actions for success. I will continue to honor my family’s “blue-collar” roots by working to excel at my chosen career and life situations. I choose to be a leader of example, and not words, all the while reducing negativity in my life. I began working towards the professional aspect of the mission statement while still in physical therapy school. By choosing an internship that emphasized patient care and empowering the patient, instead of the internship that was either closest to home or where I knew that I would have the easiest road to graduation, I took the first step towards learning how to utilize the evidence to teach patients how to reduce their symptoms. I continued this process by completing Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy courses A-D and passing the credentialing exam. I will continue to pursue my clinical education through CEU’s on MDT and my goal is to obtain the status of Diplomat of MDT. Returning back to school for the t-DPT was a major decision for me, as resources (i.e. time and money) are limited. My choice was between saving money for the Dip MDT course (about 15,000 dollars) and continuing on with the Fellowship of American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists (FAAOMPT) (about 5,000 dollars), as these courses are paired through the MDT curriculum or returning to school to work towards a Doctorate of Physical Therapy degree. I initially planned on saving for the Dip MDT and FAAOMPT, but life changes forced me to re-evaluate my situation. The decision then changed to return for the tDPT, as my employer paid for a portion of the DPT program. My goal for applying to and finishing the Dip MDT and FAAOMPT is 10 years. This is how long I anticipate that it will take to finish paying student loans and save for both programs, based on the current rate of payment. I don’t know if I will ever accomplish what I set forth in the mission statement, but I do know that it will be a forever struggle to maintain this standard that I set for myself.

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