Clinic Spotlight — South Hillsboro

PT Emily Quinn works with a pediatric patient

Therapeutic Associates

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Your partner for physical therapy in Hillsboro, Oregon

When a patient walks through the clinic doors at Therapeutic Associates South Hillsboro Physical Therapy, they enter a space filled with a palpable sense of positivity and camaraderie. From the cheerful smiles at the front desk to the attentive mannerisms of the physical therapists and exercise specialists, every aspect of the clinic exudes a friendly and upbeat vibe.

“We like to think of our clinic as Cheers, where everybody knows your name,” PT and clinic director Bailey Ouellette said with a smile.

Fostering a sense of community and familiarity in the clinic is about more than making sure patients feel welcomed and valued, it is an integral part of the healing process. That sense of support and personal encouragement helps pave the road to recovery and aligns it with a journey toward renewed well-being.

For new patients, it all begins with the first visit and evaluation.

“I always like to use the evaluation as a time to get to know the patient, as well as for them to get to know us too because this is a working relationship,” physical therapist Irene Morrow described. “I always tell patients it’s a partnership, it’s not me telling you what to do, but rather us working together for you to feel better.”

Getting to know patients is about a lot more than learning what led them to physical therapy. While the injury or condition may be the primary reason for seeking care, it is often intertwined with other factors. By exploring various aspects of a patient’s life, the physical therapy team can more effectively tailor treatment to that individual’s unique needs and goals.

“We really want to get to know what they like to do for fun. What does their day look like? How is this impacting their quality of life? When we know those things, it helps us gear our interventions and the course of care to them,” Bailey explained.

Of course, there is also a subjective component to the evaluation, during which the physical therapist assesses a patient’s range of motion, strength, posture, balance and coordination utilizing various tests and measurements. While the physical exam is used to reveal any musculoskeletal or neurological impairments, continued conversation often leads to important discoveries.

“I like to continue the conversation because it typically sparks up more information about the patient that is helpful to the therapist or the provider,” Bailey said, noting that gaining insight into a patient’s life – occupation, hobbies, family – can lead to valuable goal setting.

patient works with a Physical Therapist to assess a knee problem

“When you’re trying to establish goals with patients, a lot of people have pain-specific goals – they just want their pain to go away,” Bailey added.

Pushing patients to see beyond the pain to how it is impacting their lives is the optimal way to get them engaged in their physical therapy journey and to keep them motivated.

“It is asking a lot of questions — ‘Okay, if the pain is better, then what do you want to get back to doing?’ Or, ‘What’s something that you need to do that you can’t do because of the pain?’” Irene explained.

When patients can see a direct correlation between their efforts in PT and improvements in their daily lives, they are much more likely to be successful and get back to the things they need to do and the things they love.

An accessible “lifespan” PT clinic

The clinic’s convenient Hillsboro location bolsters the team’s dedication to supporting the local community. Not only is the space ideally situated near residential areas, but it is close to shopping and other businesses.

This accessibility fosters a strong connection with the community, as patients find comfort in knowing they can easily access the care they need, whether it’s for chronic conditions, acute injuries, or ongoing rehabilitation.

“I love that we’re in a space where some of our patients even get to walk here,” Irene emphasized. “I really love how much of the community we can serve. We have patients sometimes as young as just a couple weeks old to those well into their 90s.”

Sharing Irene’s commitment to community engagement and accessibility, Bailey emphasizes the clinic’s mission to serve as a resource for individuals seeking to enhance their quality of life and reach their health and fitness goals.

Bailey also underscores the importance of timely care, recognizing that prompt access to treatment can significantly impact patient outcomes. With flexible hours and minimal wait times, here, patients receive the attention and support they need when they need it most.

Moreover, Bailey expresses enthusiasm for the clinic team’s focus on developing their pediatric specialty.

“We’re really working on expanding our expertise in pediatric care. It’s an exciting area for us, and we’re dedicated to providing top-notch care for our youngest patients,” she said.

Developmental pediatric care at the South Hillsboro clinic encompasses a wide range of challenges and concerns, from torticollis to developmental delays to neurological conditions. Here, the pediatric specialists prioritize early intervention and validation of parental concerns, ensuring every child receives timely and personalized care. Through playful interventions and family-centered approaches, the team empowers both children and caregivers, fostering self-determination, confidence, and functional capacity as they strive to nurture joy and progress in a supportive environment.

pediatric physical therapist works with a young patient utilizing an obstacle course for fun

“If we are doing our job right, it should not look like PT. It should look like play,” explained pediatric physical therapist Emily Quinn. ”And that’s why I tell a lot of caregivers at first, too, when they’re concerned, is, ‘You might know I’m doing PT. I might know I’m doing PT, but someone who walks in that door should just think we’re playing.”

As musculoskeletal experts collaborating with patients across various age groups and conditions, the clinic team consistently prioritizes the patient experience. Whether addressing acute injuries, managing nagging pain or enhancing mobility, the objective is unwavering: partner with patients on their journeys to ensure they achieve their goals swiftly and safely.

The physical therapy journey

Throughout a patient’s PT journey, each visit serves as a pivotal opportunity for reassessment and adjustment. By beginning follow-up appointment with re-evaluations, Irene explained, providers are able to track patient progress and ensure they are on the right path.

“We make adjustments to treatment frequently because patient situations change, hopefully for the better, but sometimes not, and so we have that discussion to make sure we’re always working toward improvements and toward those patient goals,” she said.

The care team approach, which is central to how the clinic operates, reinforces continuous reassessment as exercise specialists are able to watch and help patients with their prescribed exercises to determine if they need to advance them or perhaps scale them back.

physical therapy for knee strength to alleviate pain

“Our exercise specialists play a vital role, assisting patients with prescribed exercises, offering guidance on form and technique, and asking questions to determine if their home exercise programs are meeting their needs and preferences,” Bailey explained.  “Making sure home exercise programs match the needs and wants of patients is really important in terms of getting buy-in or compliance. The program may shift and evolve to better fit the patient over time, so they continue finding value in the homework.”

Ensuring patients remain committed to completing their physical therapy plan of care involves the entire clinic team.

“I look at everyone in our office as part of the care team,” Bailey said, noting that it is important to her as director that each member of the staff knows the patients and knows their stories – why they are in PT, and what their goals are. “That means everyone here can help with scheduling, help to answer questions, and help with home exercise programs.”

physical therapist Emily Quinn works on functional exercise with a patient, keeping PT fun and applicable
physical therapy exercises in the clinic can be optimized to fit patient goals

When patients near the completion of their course of care, the obvious hope is that they feel better. But, beyond that, Irene explained, if patients are able to do the things they need and want to do with less or no pain, that is the ultimate success story.  

Additionally, Bailey added, by equipping patients with the knowledge and tools to manage any future symptoms independently, the aim is not only to address immediate concerns but also to provide long-term solutions for patients to take control of their health and well-being.

“I like equipping patients with the feeling that they know what to do, that they have the tools in their belt for addressing some of their symptoms that have come up throughout their course of care,” Bailey said. “Bodies are always changing, so sometimes things that hurt are easy to improve with a little movement, but other things take a little more complex care and so I hope that if our patients know that if need to return to PT, we are here to help them.”

a young girl raises her arms in triumph at the end of the Girls on the Run 5K

Get moving with physical therapy.

At Therapeutic Associates South Hillsboro Physical Therapy, we are committed to providing effective, efficient, and compassionate care to help patients of all ages and abilities do the things they love in life. 

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