Q: What's a typical workday like for you?
A: I work from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the clinic, where I assist the physicians by applying casts, setting braces and splints, prepping and suturing wounds and removing staples. I also setup home exercise programs, help schedule patient tests and answer patients' questions. I work at Alexandria High School from 2:30 to 5 p.m. and from one to three evenings a week during volleyball and boys' basketball seasons. There, I help tape and stretch athletes, do evaluations, see new injuries, do rechecks, and help communicate injuries to coaches and parents so they'll know the proper level of participation.
Q: How does your role fit into the bigger healthcare picture?
A: As an extension of the physician, I help deliver more comprehensive services and a higher quality of care by spending more time with patients, answering their questions and reinforcing what the physician says.
Q: Who do you interact with during the course of the day?
A: The most interaction is with physicians and physician assistants. I also interact with the scheduling department, nurses, physical therapists, patients and family members.
Q: Why did you become an athletic trainer?
A: I have always enjoyed athletics and wanted to work with an active orthopedic population - people who had orthopedic injuries and wanted to get better.
Q: What do you like about your work?
A: I enjoy helping someone return to their normal activities of daily living, whether they're a recreational golfer, a gardener or someone who wants to return to the varsity basketball team. Seeing someone return to their previous level of functioning is extremely rewarding. I've never regretted a day.