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CBI Health prioritizes safe and effective care. We recognize the importance of serving our community during the COVID-19 pandemic and we are proud to assist all clients during this time, including other essential workers. This ‘Connected Care Story’ features a client who was injured while working as a nurse at a long-term care facility.

Mia* injured her back while assisting with a patient transfer at the long-term care facility where she works. Both her lower and upper/middle back were impacted, and her pain levels were so high that she could barely walk, sit, or stand. The pain was also preventing her from sleeping through the night, which added to her feeling agitated by the injury. It was extremely frustrating for Mia as she was very passionate about her job as a nurse and was unable to tend to her clients during such a stressful time of the pandemic.

The long-term care facility where Mia worked was understaffed and dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak at the time of her injury, which added to her distress. Her inability to work took an emotional toll on her as she worried that her coworkers who would struggle to pick up the extra shifts she had given up. It was very important to Mia that she healed quickly and properly so that she could return to her job without the risk of re-injury, and perform her duties at full capacity. Her main goal was to return to helping her clients.

Mia’s physiotherapist at CBI Health created a treatment plan that started slowly based on her pain levels. Her initial treatment included hands-on therapy with soft tissue massages and a focus on joint mobilization. She was dealing with a pinched nerve, so her physiotherapist focused on removing any pressure from the nerve. She began with simple stretches and worked up to range of motion stretches, core strengthening exercises, and back strengthening exercises.

In addition to this, she worked on functional work simulated exercises to practice movements that she would regularly perform at work. These included lifting, bending, and patient transfer techniques. Mia was initially fearful of performing the patient transfer related exercises as she thought doing so would aggravate her injury and send her back to square one. Her physiotherapist worked with her to calm her nerves, and rebuild her confidence and assure her that her back was healing properly and she did not need to be afraid of the movements.

During her treatment sessions, the provincial government implemented stricter pandemic lockdown measures that prevented Mia from continuing in-person care. She was initially hesitant about trying virtual care as she was not convinced it would reap the same benefits and she was not well versed in technology. After her first virtual session, Mia was pleasantly surprised about how quickly she was able to adapt and continue seeing progress in her recovery, despite not being able to physically meet with her physiotherapist. She continued working on her exercises virtually and focused on learning proper techniques for her work duties, such as lifting techniques.

Mia has made consistent progress with each session, and has reduced her pain levels and increased the strength, mobility, and range of motion in her back. She has been very diligent with her practicing her exercises and healing her back in the proper way.

Mia is now finishing up her treatment plan, and will be back to work fulfilling her duties at full capacity soon. She is feeling independent again and has expressed gratitude to her physiotherapist and CBI Health to support her in her recovery journey.

*Client’s name has been changed.