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Neurologic physical therapy residency

VA Puget Sound Health Care System is proud to begin developing a new neurologic physical therapy residency program.

Our program supported through the VA Office of Academic Affiliations, will be a post-professional residency program for two residents per year with plans to apply for candidacy status through the American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE) for a program beginning in 2023.

VA Puget Sound holds Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) accreditations in the following: Inpatient Rehabilitation Programs: Spinal Cord Specialty Program (adults), and CIIRP; Interdisciplinary Outpatient Medical Rehabilitation Program: Spinal Cord Specialty Program (adults), Amputee Specialty Program (adults), Stroke (adults) and Blind Rehabilitation.
 
Additionally, VA Puget Sound is recognized nationally as a center of excellence for Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and is an ALS Association certified center of excellence. We also serve as the Northwest Parkinson’s Disease Research, Clinical Education Center (in collaboration with VA Portland Health Care System) and the Northwest Regional Amputation Center. 

Available clinical settings

  • Spinal cord injury unit
  • Inpatient rehabilitation
  • Outpatient rehabilitation
  • Acute care including intensive care units
  • Madigan Army Medical Center- Intrepid Spirit Center– traumatic brain injury & vestibular

Specialty opportunities

Movement disorder clinic, multiple sclerosis clinic, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis clinic, stroke clinic, interdisciplinary mobility clinic, driver’s training, aquatic therapy, orthotic clinic, lymphedema, falls education series, geriatric research education and clinical interprofessional series, home-based primary care and home safety evaluations.

Program highlights

  • There is no cost for tuition or program fees.
  • Residents are full-time salaried employees of the VA Puget Sound with access to health benefits (excluding dental and vision), and paid time off (13 days paid vacation, 13 days sick leave, and 11 federal holidays).
  • Clinical content will include screening, evaluation and treatment of adult veterans with a variety of neurological conditions in all practice settings at VA Puget Sound.
  • Didactic opportunities include online advanced practice webinars including live didactic educational opportunities, journal clubs, conferences and professional presentations. 
  • Access to board certification preparation and practice exams.
  • Clinical specialists and content experts will provide clinical mentoring during direct patient management.  VA faculty will provide additional mentoring in areas of teaching, critical inquiry, and research.
  • Work with active-duty soldiers and family at Madigan Army Medical Center’s Intrepid Spirit Center for holistic care of traumatic brain injury and vestibular related issues. 
  • Program graduates will be able to sit for the ABPTS Neurologic Physical Therapy Specialist board certification exam if candidacy status is granted before your program start date.

Additional experiences

  • Didactic coursework presented by VA clinical specialists.
  • Collaboration in learning and teaching with interdisciplinary teams.
  • Resident-directed scholarly project.
  • Resident-directed service-learning opportunity.
  • Continuing education and professional development opportunities, including APTA Clinical Instructor Level 1 credentialing course.

Work-life balance

  • Experience the Pacific Northwest culture and cuisine, attend one of the numerous professional sporting events, ride a ferry in the largest ferry system in the United States.
  • Enjoy regional access to Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands, the Olympic and Cascade mountains, or go further west to enjoy the Pacific Ocean and rainforest for any type of recreational activity you can imagine.

Our mission

The mission of the VA Puget Sound neurologic physical therapy residency program is to support Veterans Integrated Services Network (VISN) and facility missions to honor Veterans with world class health care by preparing neurologic physical therapists with advanced knowledge and clinical practice, teaching, and leadership skills in neurologic physical therapy. These residents in turn will provide outstanding service to Veterans with neurological diagnoses. The program will be active in continuous improvement processes and strategic initiatives to assure program excellence and sustainability.

Program admission requirements

  • United States citizenship
  • Degree from a CAPTE-accredited PT program.
  • Current physical therapy license in a state within the United States prior to residency start date.
  • As a developing program we anticipate a program start date no later than July 31, 2023.
  • Comply with all VA Puget Sound employment requirements.
  • Health Professions Trainees (HPTs) are appointed as temporary employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs.