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Virtual care / telehealth services have kept our clients safe while they receive treatment and care at home, but we have had clients tell us about other benefits while they have transitioned from in-clinic treatment. This Connected Care Story looks at how Bruce*, a client in a small town in Ontario, was able to refocus his treatments on functional restoration rather than pain management.

Bruce has always enjoyed walking in nature as a form of both exercise and mental rejuvenation. About a year ago, he began to experience lower back sciatica that was causing pain to run up and down his leg. This pain severely impacted his ability to walk and get exercise, so he began attending treatment sessions at a CBI Health clinic at the beginning of the year.

When the pandemic began, Bruce transitioned to virtual care / telehealth services. Early on in his virtual treatment sessions, his physiotherapist noticed a change in his range of motion and tailored the program to meet Bruce’s new health goals.

Due to Bruce’s leg and back pain, his endurance for walking meant that the journey to the clinic was always exhausting for him. By the time he would arrive at the clinic, the tremendous pain would cause the treatment to focus on providing him with pain management strategies. Now, thanks to the transition to virtual care / telehealth, Bruce no longer has to make a journey to the clinic. This means that his physiotherapist is able to start providing treatment that focuses on functional restoration rather than only his pain.

The new treatment program includes different stretches for his back and leg, hip strengthening activities, and exercises that he can complete in a chair to minimize pain. Bruce’s physiotherapist also provided him with strategies for how to manage his pain whenever he experiences it at home, and he helped Bruce create movement goals that he wanted to achieve.

Despite the fact that Bruce’s injury was significant, his physiotherapist has seen improvement in his functional movement at home, along with his mobility endurance. Bruce can move much better at home now and complete daily tasks with reduced pain. He can also go for short walks again, and he is extremely pleased at being able to enjoy his favourite activity of walking in nature again.

*Client’s name has been changed