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Why Does it take 170 Steps to Onboard a Successful Onsite PT Program?

Setting up a successful onsite PT clinic is a little more complex than meets the eye. Sure, anyone can follow a checklist of what equipment to buy and set up a dedicated space. But it’s the things you don’t see such as design and rollout that determine the program’s level of success. The keyword here is successful. Let’s take a closer look.We get asked about how long it takes to get a clinic up and running once the contract is signed. Many of our clients tell us when asked about when they would hope to have the clinic open that they would have been happy if it could have been opened three months ago. But like all things, we have found from experience that just placing a warm body onsite without a coordinated effort to get the program introduced to employees and to make sure that the provider is not only ready but also that the clinic space is also ready goes a long way to determine the overall viability and success of the program. Our implementation team follows a 170-step process to ensure everything is just right before any employee ever steps a foot in the clinic. Now do things ever happen that delay the start. Absolutely. Does everything always go as planned, even with the systems we have in place? Not even close. But we know from years of experience that things are much smoother and more successful when we follow our system to get everything up and running right the first time.

In this video, Brian Boyle, PT/DPT, dives into the process in more detail.


Designing an Onsite PT Clinic Your Employees Will Use

It takes a coordinated set of activities to launch an onsite PT clinic successfully, and they fall under these categories:

  1. Setting Goals and Performance Metrics –The management team must agree on what the company wants from an onsite PT clinic. What issues do you expect to address, and how will success be measured? Define performance metrics such as employee participation levels, reductions in injury rates, and anticipated cost savings early on during the planning phase. Also, will the therapist only work on preventing and treating MSK injuries or also conduct health screenings, worksite inspections, and employee testing? What about operating hours and staffing levels? Reaching consensus with all the stakeholders on these issues can help scope out the specific type of clinical services offered, and the type of therapist needed.
  2. Setting Up and Equipping the Physical Space - Onsite clinics aren’t a “one size fits all” model, and yours should meet the organization’s current needs and long-term health and wellness goals. Ideally, locate the clinic in a remote area that protects worker privacy. Furnish it with the appropriate PT equipment, secured IT resources, diagnostic and medical supplies. Decide who will manage the therapist and clinic’s operations and who’s responsible for complying with applicable laws and regulations, such as protecting employees’ medical records.
  3. Staffing – By understanding your workplace and culture, the PT can develop injury prevention and treatment programs that enhance employee wellbeing. Take time to educate the PT on employee job descriptions and associated hazards, worksite ergonomics, etc., so they can recommend modifications that reduce the risk of injuries.
  4. Internal Roll-Out – Initially, employees may be reticent about using the onsite clinic or revealing their aches and pains to a new PT. Setting up workplace meetings, developing marketing materials, and encouraging managers’ endorsements can help introduce employees to the PT and clinic. Once the PT becomes a trusted, familiar face, employees will feel more comfortable using their services.

Successfully operating an onsite PT clinic is easier when you partner with an expert in occupational health services that has done it before. Learn more about why you should partner with an MSK managed services provider for your program by downloading the brochure below.

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