During the first two years of training University of Minnesota Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) students have the opportunity to volunteer in one of two pro bono clinics. These voluntary outreach experiences are offered as a 1-credit, no-grade elective course (PT 6220).
Students in each clinic are supervised by licensed physical therapists serving as preceptors. All preceptors complete a brief application process to validate licensure and ensure appropriate fit to the requested clinic. Preceptors are asked to provide documentation of their physical therapy license and professional liability insurance. Records of these documents are maintained by the student representatives for the clinical sites and also by the Division of Physical Therapy Faculty Liaison. If you are a licensed PT interested in serving as a preceptor for either of the clinics, please complete the corresponding application below and email to the corresponding address.
Minneapolis Indian Health Services Diabetic Foot Clinic
In January 2005, this outreach experience was developed in collaboration with the already existing Indian Health Services Diabetic Clinic located in the Phillips Neighborhood of Minneapolis.
Two Tuesday evenings each month, University of Minnesota DPT students provide diabetic foot evaluations, exercise information, and preventative education to the Native American population alongside physician, nursing, and laboratory staff at the clinic. In addition to being supervised by a licensed physical therapy preceptor, physical therapy students have the opportunity to work with the University of Minnesota's Geriatric Residents as well. Together, healthcare students and preceptors work to address the complications associated with diabetes in a culturally sensitive manner. Student clinicians will participate in a minimum of 2 scheduled clinic sessions each semester.
In March 2003, the Phillips Neighborhood Clinic (PNC), developed as a collaboration between the Academic Health Center, the Community-University Health Center, and the Center for Health Interdisciplinary Programs. Located in the basement of St. Paul's Lutheran Church, PNC offers comprehensive, affordable health care to patients from a diverse array of cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. The clinic is staffed by a volunteer team of professionals from several disciplines; including medicine, physical therapy, laboratory science, pharmacy, nursing, nutrition, and social work. The Phillips Neighborhood Clinic is a functioning student-run clinic, operating Monday & Thursday evenings from 6-9 p.m.
First-year DPT students volunteer at PNC by completing patient scheduling, assisting with clinic organization, or by serving as Patient Advocates. During their second year, DPT students serve as PT Clinicians, performing physical therapy examinations and providing treatment under the direct supervision of a licensed physical therapist Preceptor.
As Clinicians, students learn to interact with individuals from diverse backgrounds and cultures and work alongside students from a variety of medical disciplines. This interprofessional learning approach provides a unique collaborative opportunity while students gain hands-on practice of skills learned in the classroom. Student clinicians must commit to a minimum of 3 scheduled clinic sessions each semester.