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From The CriticsReviewer:Christopher James Hughes, PT,PhD,OCS,CSCS(Slippery Rock University)
Description:This book introduces the physical therapist clinician to the concepts underlying the practice of primary care in physical therapy.
Purpose:According to the author, the book is intended to serve as a supplemental resource to other books and research publications related to the preparation of therapists assuming their role in the primary care model of health. In today's healthcare environment this book is needed and the author's objectives are met.
Audience:It is written for physical therapy students and experienced clinicians alike. The author is a scholar and physical therapist and is well qualified to write the book as are the coauthors of each chapter.
Features:The book's 18 chapters are divided into five major sections. The four chapters in section 1 provide a very good overview of primary care medicine and topics related to effective practice. These include evidence-based exam skills, the patient interview, and cultural competence. The next two sections (chapters 5-11) deal specifically with systems review and examination techniques with a patient case presented at the end of the section to reinforce the material. The coverage of concepts in this section is concise and well organized. Section four discusses care for special populations, including adolescents, obstetric patients, the work injured population, and geriatric patients. Even though each of these populations deserves a complete book of its own, the authors of these chapters were able to highlight the unique treatment considerations of each population and the content fit the theme of the book. Section 5 deals with clinical medicine and covers pharmacology, diagnostic imaging, and laboratory tests and values. This information is included to assist the therapist in understanding the role of each of these components in the diagnostic process. This in turn can enhance a physical therapist's communication with other healthcare professionals in a multidisciplinary healthcare system. Overall, each section contains effective figures, diagrams, and schematics and makes good use of tables to keep information easy to understand. The only shortcoming of the book is its brevity, but the author's intent was to provide a supplemental text that would complement other sources. In addition, there is a companion website for students and instructors which includes an image collection, PowerPoint slideshows, patient cases, web links, and examinations.
Assessment:This book fills a real need in the educational training of physical therapists. The content is suitable for students learning physical therapy as well as seasoned clinicians who would like to enhance their treatment skills for practice in today's changing healthcare system. I strongly recommend the book because it provides a nice overview of the model of primary care delivery and how the physical therapist can be an integral part.