New physio wants to help

New physio wants to help

There is a new face providing physiotherapy services to the Cook Islands.

Dave Taylor has moved to Rarotonga

Dave Taylor has moved to Rarotonga from the United States, to take on the role of physiotherapist at Te Vaerua Community Rehabilitation Service. /38

Dave Taylor has been in the country for just six weeks, having moved to Rarotonga from the United States with his wife Louise, and has joined the team at Te Vaerua Community Rehabilitation Services.

“I love what I do,” Taylor says of his work as a physiotherapist, or physical therapist as it is called in the US.

“I want to be helpful where help is needed,” Taylor says of his decision to work in the Cook Islands. He replaces physiotherapist Rebecca Washbourn, who temporarily filled the position until his arrival, adding that the six-week overlap where he and Washbourne worked together was invaluable to his settling in.

Taylor is no stranger to the Pacific, having spent two years working as a physiotherapist in American Samoa, during which time he also made a brief visit to Rarotonga with his family. His work has also taken him further afield to Kenya, where he set up a physical therapy department in a hospital, and to Moldova in Eastern Europe.

While the Cook Islands feels familiar to Taylor, in that the daily routine of getting in a car and finding a home without a street address is something he has done before, the country itself is new with different customs and language.

Originally from Seattle, Taylor has a degree in physiotherapy, completed his Masters thesis and is an adjunct professor at the University of Washington.

His work has primarily involved working in the public school system in the US, where he provided services for any physically disabled children, as well as running a home health care business for 10 years.

Te Vaerua has an open clinic every Tuesday from 1–4pm for $20 per session, with Taylor advising that anyone who wishes to make an appointment can ring him on 55240.

Taylor says that the home health care involved similar work to what he will be doing in the Cook Islands – visiting adults in their home and specialising in rehabilitation, with the work split between providing services at Te Vaerua and the hospital.

“I love being in the home because that’s where the challenge is,” he said, adding that he sees his key strengths in education for the family and the community.

“I really want folks to move away from receiving doses of treatment,” Taylor said. He says that the word rehabilitation itself means to learn how to live again, and that this requires active participation from clients.

Taylor has also been working with the Creative Centre, spending one morning a week there.

“What can we do here to help this group of people do better,” is what Taylor says is his aim, with this often involving training family members in areas such as correct lifting techniques.

Taylor would like to thank the Ministry of Health and the wonderful board of Te Vaerua for their continued support, and Island Bike and Car Hire for providing him with a vehicle.

Te Vaerua has an open clinic every Tuesday from 1–4pm for $20 per session, with Taylor advising that anyone who wishes to make an appointment can ring him on 55240.

source: http://www.cookislandsnews.com/national/item/42200-new-physio-wants-to-help

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