The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics is redefining the way musculoskeletal care is delivered across the region with locations throughout Maryland, DC, Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Department: Physical Therapy
Originally from: Manila, Philippines
Has been with OFAC since: May 2015
A: I got to the United States four years ago in May 2011. I had been working as a physical therapist in the Philippines for about three and a half years. It’s good to practice there – it’s a stepping stone – but you can’t really make a good living as a physical therapist over there. I worked with the athletes of the Philippine basketball team, which was a fun and rewarding job, but I kind of felt like I hit a wall and didn’t have any more room for growth. I decided to make my way over here and worked for another physical therapy company before breaking my ankle while texting going down the stairs in 2013. The injury landed me with Dr. Neufeld and physical therapy here. So I was a patient first! I’ve been here since December 2013 when I started working with Matt [Bernier].
A: It’s fun because your environment is constantly changing. Every 30 minutes is unpredictable – you never know what patient you’re going to get. The people here are really nice, and they welcomed me into a family-like atmosphere. It’s very professional, and the system is really great. That’s what I liked about this place; they have perfected their system in how they go about treating people, and it works very well.
A: It’s always a big pleasure to make patients feel better in whatever way – we get such a big rush even when they make improvements like going up and down the stairs. We’re helping people get back to doing things that were previously hard for them, and it’s very fulfilling.
A: It’s a never-ending learning experience. New techniques for learning how to make the body work more efficiently are developed every year. Just knowing how things work or how things tick blows my mind. I find it really cool that there’s something called “Dry Needling” – I call it “Western Acupuncture.” All of these techniques, all of these little instruments that work on tissue to save your fingers as a therapist are making things more efficient for us. There’s so much knowledge about the body now. Thanks to technology, we’re more aware.
A: The funniest thing that anyone has ever told me is “you’re the nicest person I’ve ever hated.” It’s tough. Physical therapy is tough. Patients think, “oh, you have such a sweet face,” but then once you work on them, it’s “oh man, you’re vicious.” Obviously, keep working on your exercises. There’s always a method to the madness. There’s a reason you’re going through all of this. I help you, you help me, and we’ll get you back to where you want to be.