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Physiotherapists

Welcome to the physiotherapy pages of the education website at Sunnybrook. In total there are approximately 80 full-time equivalent positions filled by the physiotherapy group representing 115 individuals in the roles of physiotherapists, physiotherapist assistants and advanced practice physiotherapists. We have a commitment to clinical education and are linked closely to the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Toronto.

Each year our therapists supervise student physiotherapy internships, structured clinical setting sessions and student research projects. We also facilitate small group learning, participate in lectures, clinical skills labs and provide service to the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Toronto. Over 40 student placements/internships occur at our facility on an annual basis.

Information on these pages has been designed for the potential or current physiotherapy student, physiotherapy assistant student and the physiotherapy clinical educator.

Program structure

Sunnybrook is organized in a program management model. Physiotherapy professional practice is under the leadership of Nicole Cooper (416-480-4430). Physiotherapists work in all seven programs of Sunnybrook across the continuum of healthcare (acute to chronic, in-patient to out-patient) and across the continuum of life (babies to veterans) offering our learners a range of opportunities not readily available at other institutions.

Student education is coordinated by the physiotherapy education practice leader, and centre coordinator of clinical education (CCCE) (at the Bayview site) Robyn Davies (416-480-4602), the CCCEs at the Holland site Dragana Boljanovic (416-967-8626 ext. 3342) and Maria Rachevitz (416-967-8500 ext. 3326)

Student internship structure

Physiotherapy student and physiotherapist assistant student clinical education uses a preceptorship model of learning. Students participate in units of clinical education throughout their time as a student.

Students are typically matched to a clinical instructor for the duration of their clinical internship. A match of one student to one clinical instructor (CI) is called a 1:1 model of supervision. Other common models are one student: two CIs, two students: one CI and two students: two CI's.

Length of Placement/Internship

University of Toronto students participate in the following clinical units at Sunnybrook:

Clinical unit

Length

Unit 3 - Basic Skills

Three weeks in mid - February of first year

Unit 4a - Mobility

Five weeks in April or October or November

Unit 4b - Cardio-respiratory

Five weeks in April or October or November

Unit 7 - Neurology

Five weeks in October or November

Unit 9 - Advanced Musculoskeletal

Five weeks in April of second year

Unit 11 - Selective

Five weeks in August of second year

Physiotherapy students from other university programs are considered out-of-catchment students. Timing and length of out-of-catchment placements varies according to the learning institution that the student is attending. While Sunnybrook welcomes students from other university programs, these arrangements should be initiated through the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Toronto with the director of clinical education.

Physiotherapist assistant (PTA) students timing and length of clinical placements varies according to the learning institution that the student attends.

Assessment of students

Physiotherapy students from the University of Toronto and all Canadian and American physiotherapy programs are assessed using the clinical performance instrument (CPI). The form is provided to the students by the educational institution in which they are enrolled for their physiotherapy degree. These forms are completed at the mid-term and final point of the clinical internship. They are completed by the clinical instructor(s). Students are also required to complete a self-evaluation using this form at the mid-term and final evaluation times.

Additionally, students are responsible to complete individual learning objectives. These learning objectives are reviewed at the mid-term and final evaluation times.

All students are required to evaluate their clinical experience at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre by completing a site evaluation. This evaluation is specific to physiotherapy services and is in addition to the general evaluation that all health care professional students complete of their experience at Sunnybrook. The physiotherapy specific evaluation is completed and reviewed at the mid-term and final evaluation times.

PTA students use assessment forms that are unique to the learning institution that they are from. These forms are brought with the students to Sunnybrook and completed by both the PTA student and the clinical instructor.

Regulatory body and professional association

The physiotherapy profession in Ontario is regulated in Ontario by the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario. Regulations and standards for students and practicing clinicians are available at this linked site.

The Ontario Physiotherapy Association is the provincial professional association and the Canadian Physiotherapy Association is the national professional association. These websites provide information on courses and conferences offered to clinicians and students alike.

Clinical education resources for clinical educators

There are several resources available to therapists who are interested in clinical education:

Intercampus physiotherapy education committee (IPEC) supports and organizes professional in-house courses, teleconferences and in-services. The committee is comprised of physiotherapists and physiotherapist assistants from both sites of Sunnybrook. Information on up-coming events is distributed at the monthly physiotherapy meetings and internal email.

The rehabilitation sector (which includes the Department of Physical Therapy) at the University of Toronto is committed to supporting Clinical Education. Each year, in April, an annual clinical education day is held. This free day is open to all of Sunnybrook's physiotherapists. Specific details of the date, time and registration process for this event are sent out to the therapists usually near the beginning of each year (as the information becomes available).

The University of Western Ontario and Fanshawe College (supported by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care) has developed an on-line preceptor education program (PEP) for health care professionals and their students. Students and clinical educators can take advantage of this free eight module resource simply by registering on the website.

The Ontario Physiotherapy Association is the provincial professional association and the Canadian Physiotherapy Association is the national professional association. These web-sites provide information on courses and conferences offered to clinicians and students alike.

The American Physical Therapy Association has developed a Clinical Instructor Education and Credentialing Program (CIECP) for clinical educators. Both Sunnybrook and the Department of Physical Therapy, University of Toronto have credentialed trainers for this course.

Contact information

Physiotherapy professional leader
Nicole Cooper
Phone: 416-480-4430
Email: nicole.cooper
@sunnybrook.ca


Physiotherapy education practice leader, and centre coordinator of clinical education (CCCE) (at Bayview site)
Robyn Davies
Phone: 416-480-4602
Email: robyn.davies
@sunnybrook.ca


CCCEs at the Holland site
Dragana Boljanovic
Phone: 416-967-8626 ext. 3342
Email: dragana.boljanovic
@sunnybrook.ca


Maria Rachevitz
Phone: 416-967-8500 ext. 3326
Email: maria.rachevitz
@sunnybrook.ca