Blog Post

Better, Faster, Smarter: How Technology Is Transforming Rehab Therapy

PXM bridges the gap between delivering personalized patient care and the advanced technologies available to do so. 

Ryan Giebel
5 min read
September 12, 2023
Technology Is Transforming Rehab Therapy with an iMac and schedules and charts from WebPT
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Technology continues to transform the healthcare industry with advancements like wearable technologies, motion capture, virtual reality (VR), and healthcare gamification. In the present environment, there has never been a better time for rehabilitation services to use technology to improve patient outcomes. These technologies have the ability to accelerate healing, improve the patient and provider experience, and streamline clinic workflows. Unfortunately, many providers and patients complain of a disjointed and fragmented experience.

Providers and patients need technology to make care delivery better, not harder. True connectivity and patient-centered care are essential to treatment today and can best be attained through the principles of practice experience management (PXM). Here’s how the technology at the center of PXM is transforming rehab therapy to make it better, faster, and smarter.

The Drudgery of Rehab Therapy Workflows

The field of physical therapy requires too many manual touchpoints on tasks that could—and should—be automated. Mundane processes like sifting through paper referrals or completing paper authorization forms are taking precious time away from patient care

Take documentation, for instance; too often, therapists scratch notes on paper only to document them at home later. Other therapists manually fax a progress note to a physician referral when that same physician is on the Direct Secure Messaging (DSM) directory and prefers this form of communication. Thankfully, these and other rehab therapy processes can easily be optimized in 2023—with the technology at the center of the PXM model. 

The Advent of Digital MSK

The last four years have seen a forced acceleration of digital transformation. And with the many new advancements seen in today’s healthcare industry, digital musculoskeletal (MSK) care has become all the rage. Thousands of companies have entered the fray trying to capitalize on a multi-billion dollar industry, but many of these options lack the true connectivity that PXM requires.  

Sure, having access to a physical therapy platform from the couch sounds nice—and is certainly useful in certain instances—but it can never replace the in-person care a rehab therapist provides. Where PXM excels is in offering a multitude of patient-to-provider technologies under one umbrella that seamlessly combines the convenience of digital MSK with the expertise and human connection of in-person care. These include:

The Delivery of Patient Outcomes

Perhaps the greatest boon PXM and technology give providers is the ability to optimize outcomes. Many clinicians are looking to augment their care through a vast array of tech advancements designed to maximize patient outcomes. As seen in this year’s State of Rehab Therapy Report, rehab therapists are excited to drive optimal patient outcomes with:

  • biomedical technology (e.g., regenerative medicine, smart implants),
  • data informatics and analytics for patient care and engagement,
  • rehabilitative robotics (e.g., exoskeletons for spinal cord injury), 
  • virtual reality-based physical therapy exercise and patient interaction, and
  • telehealth-enabled exercise equipment.

With the many new tools and software applications entering the market on what seems like a daily basis, the PXM approach is necessary to ensure that processes remain truly connected and do not add additional hurdles for providers and their patients.

The Transformed Patient Experience 

For many patients, the pursuit of optimal outcomes is rooted in a need for personalized care. Without a level of individualized care built into every treatment plan, patients will continue to feel like they’re at the DMV rather than their caregiver’s office, awaiting poor service and unsatisfactory results. However, the technological advances housed in a PXM experience promise a different picture.

Providing a digital suite of tools under a PXM umbrella provides the therapist with an optimal view of the patient’s experience. Going a step further, the connectivity of systems will also benefit the patient by enabling them to take a more active role in their health care. An EMR must have a direct communication pathway to the many facets of a patient’s journey. From scheduling an appointment using online scheduling, completing a digital patient intake, accessing a HEP digitally, or providing feedback on their care satisfaction with PRM solutions, the patient journey becomes unencumbered with a PXM solution.

What’s more, a truly connected platform delivers data-driven progress that is tracked and monitored to empower the patient and provider. With PXM enabled, the patient’s experience of rehab therapy will inevitably yield a fast recovery and optimal outcomes.

Whether through a PXM umbrella that offers true connectivity or the many advancements in care that accelerate healing, increase patient engagement, and drive patient advocacy, technology is transforming rehab therapy to rise to the demands of today’s healthcare landscape. Do you have any new tech trends or ideas to share? Use the comment section below and drop us a line.                             


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