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“Health is wealth”. These are short but very meaningful words that have been inculcated in my mind by most elderly people that I have met in my life. For many, the absence of any illness or disability is a measure of a healthy person and a healthy living. It is difficult to contradict this assumption since a person without health problems tend to function independently and effectively. Health is not only a fundamental human right. The World Health Organization (1948) viewed health as a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing, and not merely the absence of disease of infirmity. The promotion of health and the achievement of this world-wide social goal require the action of social services, economic and health sectors as well as personal resources and physical capabilities. Due to the magnitude of services that are needed in the field of health and my passion for volunteer work and community service, I would like to be involved in providing therapy and rehabilitation services to the elderly and those who have health-related problems.
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Early in life, I have been involved in various community and voluntary services, e.g. encouraging and helping the neighbors segregate their garbage, taking the sick to nearby health centers, visiting the elderly who are in the nursing homes or living away from their families, helping children with special needs, talking and listening to the elderly and attending to their basic needs. In my years of performing these services, the personal satisfaction that I have gained is overwhelming. A beautiful smile, a warm hug and words of appreciation are rewards that have inspired me to extend my services and to improve my skills. Although there are many challenges that I have encountered especially when people are sick, depressed or in pain, I learned to be more patient and to empathize with them. The sick and the elderly handled their pains and depression in ways which may be challenging for many healthcare workers. Manny have become withdrawn, demanding, verbally abusive and unpredictable. Managing patients effectively and learning to use various modalities are the skills that I need to learn so I can become a better healthcare worker.
While rendering voluntary services to people who are homebound, I discovered that some patients fail to continue their therapy and rehabilitation on a regular basis due to their inability to travel or due to the unavailability of their family or companion to take them to the health center. This inspired me to consider taking a college degree so I could be a physical therapy assistant. In addition to working in a rehabilitation center or hospital, I intend to work closely with the physical therapist so I could provide home therapy services to patients who are homebound or living in nursing homes. I believe that to achieve the optimum function of an individual, it is necessary that continuous therapy be implemented. When patients are unable to travel and avail of the rehabilitation services in health centers or hospitals, they will not be able to return to active life as quickly as possible. Furthermore, their pain may not be reduced, their functions and recuperation will not be maximized, and their quality of life will not be enhanced. When I become a physical therapy assistant, I want to be a part of the team that will provide education so patients will learn about their disorders, the functions of their body and the importance of physical fitness and prevention of impairments and disabilities.
After completing the degree that will allow me to be a physical therapy assistant, I will enrich myself with knowledge and experience through work exposure and reading of articles and research materials related to physical therapy and rehabilitation. In the future, I also want to be a physical therapist so I can work directly with doctors, evaluate the condition of patients, design and implement a treatment and intervention plan to meet the needs and goals of every patient. With a dedicated heart for the elderly and persons in need, a passion to be of service to my community and a determination to succeed, I will be able to complete my education and attain success in my chosen endeavor.
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