Ivy Rehab HSS Orthopedic Residency Program 

Ivy Rehab HSS Orthopedic Residency Program 

What is an Orthopedic Certified Specialist? 

After a Physical Therapists graduates with their Doctorate in Physical Therapy degree, they then sit for their National Physical Therapy Board Exam in order to become licensed to begin practicing Physical Therapy in the setting of their choice. Upon graduating and passing their initial licensing exam, therapists can choose an area of Physical Therapy to become a specialist in. In the field of Physical Therapy there are 11 areas of specialty that therapists can become a board-certified specialist in.  Orthopedics is one of those specialty areas. Currently, only 7% of all Physical Therapists are Orthopedic Certified Specialists. The process of preparing for the Board Certification Examination is an intense pathway and can be completed via self-study or through a structured residency program.   

What is an Orthopedic Residency Program? 

According to the American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE), “A residency program is a post professional planned learning experience comprised of a curriculum encompassing the essential knowledge, skills, and responsibilities of an advanced physical therapist within a defined area of practice. When board certification exists through the American Board of Physical Therapist Specialties for that specialty, the residency program prepares the physical therapist with the requisite knowledge and skill set needed to pass the certification examination following graduation.” 

An Orthopedic Certified Specialist has the advanced knowledge to treat all body regions and orthopedic injuries. A residency program further elevates the specialist’s practice by providing learning opportunities and hands-on training, along with 1:1 mentoring. This allows them to truly become a best-in-class clinician for the patients they are working within their specialty field.  An orthopedic residency program provides an accelerated pathway to advanced clinical practice in the specialty of orthopedic physical therapy. 

About Ivy Rehab HSS Orthopedic Residency Program 

Ivy Rehab and Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) worked closely together to develop this residency program for Ivy Rehab employees and continue to work together to evolve the program. HSS brings its expertise and experience in orthopedic residency education to collaborate with Ivy Rehab, who provides a strong platform of resources, drive, and support to sustain high-quality education and training for their therapists. This allows for a team-based foundation from both organizations to create an Orthopedic Residency Program that is first in class. The program began development in 2018 and had it first graduating class in 2020. 

The Ivy Rehab HSS Orthopedic Residency Program (ORP) will be seeking initial accreditation for its next cohort of residents. The ORP is open to all licensed and practicing Physical Therapists employed by Ivy Rehab Network.   

Two main goals of this post-professional program are: 

  1. To prepare clinicians to successfully sit for the Orthopedic Certified Specialist exam once eligible.  
  1. To develop advanced-level clinicians in the specialty practice of orthopedics through evidence-based education and clinical mentoring.  

The Ivy Rehab HSS ORP is a 12-month program led by Program Directors Christina Bentrewicz from Ivy Rehab and Jason Mayerhofer from HSS. Christina and Jason work with a team of educators from HSS and Ivy Rehab who execute a comprehensive residency curriculum, including self-study modules, essential reading, online weekly synchronous learning/journal club/case review, and quarterly in-person weekend intensive courses. The program is designed in a hybrid format to allow any therapist across the Ivy Rehab Network to participate in this advanced clinical program. 

Each resident is teamed up with a qualified mentor to complete at least 150 hours of 1:1 mentoring for the residency year. The mentors typically complete their mentoring hours in the resident’s clinic and provide support, education, coaching, and guidance to the resident. Mentorship is a cornerstone of the ORP and all other residency programs Ivy Rehab offers. The time the mentor and resident spend together is an invaluable component that truly helps clinicians develop into specialists and advanced practitioners. 

As a part of the program mission, we strive to create well-rounded therapists who can focus on advancement through evidence-based clinical reasoning, development of expert-level clinical skills, as well as being mindful, and focusing on creating a strong therapeutic alliance with patients. The program additionally supports the residents by providing leadership skills and opportunities to continually move our profession forward.  

Article By: Christina Bentrewicz PT, DPT, OCS 

Christina Bentrewicz PT, DPT, OCS, is the Director of Residency Programs/Director of the Orthopedic Residency Program at Ivy Rehab. With over 20 years of clinical experience as a Physical Therapist in outpatient rehabilitation and a board-certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist, she has a passion for providing and creating opportunities for therapists to provide advanced and specialized care to patients to improve the quality of life of everyone involved in the process.  

The medical information contained herein is provided as an information resource only, and does not substitute professional medical advice or consultation with healthcare professionals. This information is not intended to be patient education, does not create any patient-provider relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis, treatment or medical advice. Please consult with your healthcare provider before making any healthcare decisions or for guidance about a specific medical condition. If you think you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. IvyRehab Network, Inc. disclaims any and all responsibility, and shall have no liability, for any damages, loss, injury or liability whatsoever suffered as a result of your reliance on the information contained herein.

Share this article!