August 9, 2007
Outpatient rehabilitation expands
By Susan Christensen
Health and Research News Service
RIDGELAND, Miss.—Methodist Rehabilitation Center recently opened a physical therapy clinic at Fitness Lady in Ridgeland, a move that makes perfect sense to gym member Monique Guimbellot of Madison.
“If you need physical therapy, your gym would be the best place to have it,” she said. “It’s so convenient.”
Guimbellot was among the hundreds who took advantage of a March health fair and open house at Fitness Lady. For most, it was a time to take advantage of free health screenings and learn more about the services offered by Methodist Rehab.
But for gym member Lillian Magruder of Ridgeland, it also was a chance to get re-acquainted with a health care provider that is near and dear to her heart. In 1999, her late husband Abbey recovered from a massive brain hemorrhage at Methodist Rehab’s 124-bed hospital in Jackson.
“When he was transferred to Methodist, he couldn’t sit on the side of the bed without two people holding him up and he had a tracheotomy and a feeding tube,” she said. “He walked out five weeks later, which is a miracle.”
In case she ever needs outpatient rehab, Magruder said it’s nice to know she can turn to an institution she already trusts for care. “I think this clinic is a really good thing,” she said.
Opening an outpatient facility is nothing new for Methodist Rehab. It already has therapy clinics in Flowood, Jackson and another site in Ridgeland. What is different is the focus of the Fitness Lady clinic.
Because the fitness center is for women only, Methodist Rehab staff will be able to pair its wide range of traditional clinical services with an increased emphasis on therapies for decidedly female concerns, said Susan Geiger, manager of outpatient growth and development at Methodist Rehab.
“In this setting, we can educate more women about common issues such as incontinence, pelvic pain and conditions related to pregnancy, Cesarean section and breast surgery,” Geiger said. “Another plus is we can use the center’s pool for aquatic therapy.”
Fitness Lady owner Marilyn Tyler said women need that focused attention because so many ignore their own needs to care for others. “Lots of times it takes a health crisis for them to take care of themselves,” she said. “Many of our members join Fitness Lady after they’ve been in physical rehab. A lot are dealing with hip and knee replacements, neck and back surgery or they are recovering from a stroke or heart problems.”
Geiger said the clinic will be able to offer therapy for all the above, as well as problems that go hand in hand with an athletic lifestyle i.e. strains, sprains and typical overuse injuries.
The clinic is open to all women -- including those who aren’t Fitness Lady members -- but a physician’s referral is required.
“A lot of people mistakenly believe that they need to go to a specialist for a referral to a physical therapist, but it really depends on your problem,” Geiger said. “We work with obstetricians and gynecologists to care for women with incontinence and post-partum problems. And family physicians refer patients with a variety of conditions, including back and joint pain, balance concerns and reconditioning after surgery or illness.”
For more information about the Methodist Rehabilitation Center clinic at Fitness Lady in Ridgeland, call 601-936-8888.
Monique Guimbellot, left, of Madison has her finger pricked so that case manager Sherrill Humphrey can check her glucose and cholesterol levels.