Who's in Charge of this Joint?: A Leading Role for PT and PTAs in Rheumatology. Webinar Series

This is the first webinar of a two part series. You may attend one session or both

7:00 PM – 8:30 PM

Login will be sent day of event


Primary presenter: Kim Steinbarger PT, MHS, DHSc (C)

Special topic presenter: Ben Shatto, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS

Course objectives

  1. Participants will understand the physical therapist’s role in population health
  2. Participants will understand the important components of a health promotion program for people with autoimmune arthritis
  3. Participants will outline a health promotion program for a mock patient with rheumatoid arthritis
  4. Participants will identify the barriers to population health in the current healthcare landscape, and brainstorm some solutions.



Day 1 – Tuesday, September 29 at 7 pm 

Introduction/overview - 20 minutes 

 What is the role of the physical therapist in population health? Primary Care?

What is autoimmune arthritis?

            Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Gout, Lyme, Non-Specific Connective Tissue



Introduce Case study 

Intervention topics - 35 minutes

1.     Physical activity

Adult guidelines

What counts?

Managing a flare


2. Diet – Dr. Ben Shatto

What impedes recovery?

Why Comorbidities matter and why we get a thorough medical history

Many auto-immune disorders affect the digestive tract such as Chrones, leaky gut syndrome, Celiac Disease, Ulcerative Colitis etc…

These disorders and many others can impact nutrient absorption.

No nutrients = no healing

What can PT do and what is our role?



Day 2 - Tuesday October 13 at 7 pm 

Intervention topics - 40 minutes


1.     Energy conservation

Spoon theory

Scheduling energy – Priorities!


2.     Pain neuroscience/coping/mood

Chronic pain – reframe

Depression risk


3.     Joint protection/activity modification

Becoming aware of the options


4.     Community resources/ADA

Applying for ADA accommodations at work

What is available in your community?

Reliable online resources

Arthritis Foundation

Simple Tasks (American College of Rheumatology) 


Wrap up and questions - 20 minutes

1.     Go over case study, solicit ideas

2.     What are the barriers to population health?

3.     How can we work around those barriers?

4.     Rheumatologist offices – Ask a PT!

Kimberly Steinbarger, PT, MHS, DHSc Candidate

Husson University School of Physical Therapy

 Speaker Bio: Kim Steinbarger graduated with her BS in PT in 1989, and was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 1991. After practicing in acute care for several years, she settled into the skilled nursing setting, specializing in wound care. In 1998, she made the jump into academia, becoming first an instructor, then the Program Director for the PTA Program at Michiana College in South Bend, IN. Upon moving to Maine in 2002, Kim began teaching for the School of Physical Therapy at Husson University. She earned her Masters Degree (MHS) in 2005 from the University of Indianapolis. She continued her career at Husson University, managing the clinical education program and teaching the therapeutic skills courses. She has presented several posters and platform presentations in the past 6 years, speaking at the local, regional, and national levels. Kim founded and now directs Husson's Soaring Eagles Healthcare Pro Bono Clinic. In 2016, Kim was accepted into the DHSc program at Drexel University. Her research interests include the development and evaluation of a disease self-management program for people with autoimmune arthritis, based on self-determination theory. She is presently a DHSc candidate in her dissertation phase at Drexel University, serves on the Practice Committee for the American College of Rheumatology's Association of Rheumatology Professionals, and is the Director of Clinical Education for the School of Physical Therapy at Husson University.



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