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Symposium 9 - Musculoskeletal 2

Exploring physiotherapy practice in the emergency department across the globe: similarities, differences, challenges, and opportunities for advancement

Learning objectives

  1. Obtain a broad understanding of the similarities and differences of typical ED PT practice as occurs in 4 different continental regions (Australia, Nigeria, Singapore, United States).

  2. Appreciate the unique opportunities and challenges to providing PT-specific patient-centered care in the ED environment through a case study example.

  3. Contribute to an audience-based discussion that offers additional plan-of-care and management ideas in consideration of the case study presented.

  4. Consider the aspirational ED PT practice goals (overcoming barriers) of the 4 regions presented. 

Click here for a patient's case study.


Symposium Speaker and Convenor: Dr Rebekah Griffith,  University of Colorado Hospital, USA

Topic title: The ED PT practice in the United States of America including a case study that compares and contrasts patient episode of PT care in the ED.

Biography: Dr Griffith is a physical therapist with over 10 years of experience practicing in the Emergency Department. She is a board certified neurologic clinical specialist and an orthopedic manual therapy fellow in training at Regis University. She teaches continuing education related to ED PT practice and serves as a consultant in this area. Dr Griffith is the creator and host of “The ED DPT” podcast as well as author of Top of Scope: The Emergency Department Physical Therapist Handbook.



Speaker: Dr Poonam Pal, Physiotherapy Center @ Harbourfront & Rehab Alliance (Private Practice)

Topic title: The ED PT practice in Singapore including a case study that compares and contrasts patient episode of PT care in the ED.

Biography: Dr. Pal graduated with a PhD titled “Cumulative loads on the lumbar spine during wool harvesting” from University of Otago in 2010. Her PhD scholarship was funded by Vernon Willey Trust Fellowship and the Health Research Council of New Zealand. She has worked in various public organisations in Singapore and her last employment was at Changi General Hospital where she worked for nearly a decade. She has vast experience in musculoskeletal physiotherapy at the Accident & Emergency department and outpatient clinics. Her areas of expertise are in the assessment and management of spinal conditions and has a special interest in the assessment and management of chronic pain. Besides clinical practice she enjoys mentoring and teaching junior colleagues.


Speaker: Dr Oluwatoyin Adeniji, University of Wollongong, Australia and University of Surrey, UK

Topic title: The ED PT practice in Nigeria including a case study that compares and contrasts patient episode of PT care in the ED.

Biography: Dr Olu is a physiotherapist with over a decade of experience in the UK and Nigeria, with expertise in musculoskeletal physiotherapy. Olu is currently working on a doctoral dissertation that explores rapid adaptations in emergency department services during the COVID-19 pandemic, spanning across the UK and Australia.


Speaker: Dr Marie K March, Western Sydney Local Health District, NSW Health, Australia and Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney, Australia

Topic title: The ED PT practice in Australia including a case study that compares and contrasts patient episode of PT care in the ED.

Biography: Dr March is an Australian trained Physiotherapist who currently works as a Senior Physiotherapist in the Emergency Department at Western Sydney Local Health District in Sydney, Australia. She has a clinical background in orthopaedics, which has also informed her PhD research, exploring psychological health and knee arthroplasty. Her research track record also includes psychologically informed physiotherapy, osteoarthritis, implementation science and hip fracture.


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