The Orthopedic Physical Therapy Residency (OPTR) program at Touro College has received credentialing from the American Physical Therapy Association, ending a yearlong process. Credentialing is a process used by APTA to ensure the quality of the education that participants receive in residency and fellowship programs in physical therapy.

“Touro’s program is outstanding, and programs like this are viewed as the future of physical therapy education,” said Dr. Louis Primavera, dean of the School of Health Sciences.

“We are proud to be one of the programs credentialed by the American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education, as it testifies to the excellence of our program,” said Dr. Frances Corio, director of Touro’s OPTR program.

Touro’s orthopedic residency program is one of only 75 orthopedic residencies across the country and one of four in the New York area. The program is unique in approach and design and as a part-time program, allows participants to continue working while they complete the program.

“Our goal is to help our residents cultivate their expertise in orthopedic physical therapy, and our focus is excellence in patient care,” Dr. Corio said.

Established in 2009, Touro’s OPTR program is a two-year, part-time program for physical therapists who wish to pursue a post-graduate specialization in orthopedics. Residents participate in rigorous clinical coursework, online mentoring, and supervised clinical training in the art and science of orthopedic physical therapy practice.

Through clinical supervision and mentoring in the classroom, at the residents’ work sites, and at clinical residency settings with physical therapists who excel in the field, the residents are prepared to take the clinical specialist exam in orthopedic physical therapy and become board-certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialists (OCS), the next step in career advancement.

According to Jill Horbacewicz, PT, Ph.D., director of the physical therapy department, the physical therapy profession is moving in the direction of developing residencies in specialized areas, and Touro’s department has always had a reputation for being a leader in orthopedic physical therapy education.

“Now that the profession is moving towards residencies for physical therapists, it is a natural progression for us to be one of the first in New York to have our orthopedic residency program become credentialed by APTA,” Dr. Horbacewicz said.

Touro’s OPTR program is offered at the Bay Shore campus only. v


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