An experience during high school caused a complete career change for Valerie Eredia. She had always dreamed of becoming a lawyer and thought that was the career path she would take after high school. However little did she know after attending Sutter High schools Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) luncheon her plans would quickly change.
After hearing Sutter North Medical Foundation Physical Therapist, Bryan Rodrigues speak about his career and why he enjoys being a physical therapist, Valerie knew this was the job for her. “I have always been fascinated with the human anatomy, but never thought about becoming a physical therapist until hearing Bryan speak”, said Valerie. During his speech Bryan mentioned in addition to all the science classes required in becoming a physical therapist, one should also have a passion for working with the public. That could mean the young, elderly, or athletes. “I think I was drawn to the idea of working with all types of people who make up our great community. There is not a specific type of person who needs physical therapy. Anyone can fall, get hurt playing sports, be recovering from surgery, or be born with a physical disability. That’s what drew me the most to this profession. I would be able to interact with, and feel that I helped improve the health of my community one patient at a time”, said Valerie.
Once completing her undergraduate work at Yuba College, Valerie researched the amount of schooling and training needed to become a physical therapist and enrolled at Sacramento State. Shortly after learning physical therapy students were required to have approximately 90 hours per semester of job shadowing and observation time before being accepted into the pt program, Valerie contacted Sutter North Medical Foundation to see if she could observe their physical therapy department. By observing the physical therapy program at Sutter North Valerie has learned to appreciate everyday skills. “Sometime people are recovering for a surgery or accident and they need to learn all over again how to walk or throw a ball. Knowing that I will one day have a hand in helping improve the lives of others is a wonderful thing,” said Valerie.
It is not uncommon for most Universities to require a student to job shadow healthcare professionals within their same interested field of study today. In addition to offering varied physical therapy services, Sutter North’s physical therapy facility serves as an off-site training center for physical therapy students attending California State University, Fresno, California State University, Sacramento, Samuel Merritt College, Slippery Rock University, Pennsylvania, University of the Pacific and Sacramento City College to name a few.
Fortunately for Valerie, Sutter North Medical Foundation’s Physical Therapy Department has six physical therapist to observe. With each physical therapist having different training and unique qualities to contribute to the department, Valerie has had the opportunity to see all types of patients and techniques used by Physical Therapists. “Its amazing to me to see the patients who have recently has reconstructive knee surgery said Valerie. When the patients first come in they are just recovering from surgery and they have such a limited rang of motion. After a few weeks of therapy though you can tell they are eager to come into the office and get back to their normal life”, said Valerie.
Sutter North Medical Foundation’s Physical Therapy provides occupational therapy, sports injury, injury or disease recovery, independent exercise programs, community education, functional restoration, pre- and post-operative therapy, joint mobilization, urinary incontinence, muscular and joint dysfunction, back, neck pain and spinal disorders, and headaches. “Care is given by skilled, caring staff who work hard to provide a pleasant atmosphere for our patients. Primary treatment is done with a manual therapy/hands-on emphasis that requires close supervision, frequent re-assessment and treatment modification in response to patient needs,” explains Bob Thompson, PT, DPT, MSPT.
Sutter North Medical Foundation’s Physical Therapist offer patients over 135 combined years of experience between six licensed physical therapists - Bob Thompson, PT, DPT, MSPT; Bryan Rodrigues, PT, DPT, MSPT; Ken Thompson, MPT, Adriene Aono, DPT; David Graham, PT; and Bruce Anderson, PT. In addition, patients have access to an 8,600 square foot physical therapy facility located at 420 B Street facility in Yuba City.
To learn more about Sutter North's Physcial Therapy Department click here