There are many continuing education options out there for OTs, SLPs, and PTs. Not every option is perfect for every therapist. In writing this, I hope to help you discern whether MedBridge is the right choice for you.
With a MedBridge subscription you get:
- All of the continuing education you will need for licensing and NBCOT renewal.
- Customizable patient education and home exercise programs options ranging from handouts to videos.
- Access to a library of resources to help you develop your therapy techniques.
Read on for pros and cons for each of these sections.
I am a continuing education nerd. I’m thrilled about the new technology that allows me to sit on my couch and learn from the best in my practice niche.
MedBridge is among the frontrunners in their video quality and has a solid pool of professionals—I recognized names like Jan Davis, Rick Gawenda, Adriaan Louw and Teepa Snow.
Pros: If you work in one of the most common OT settings, there is continuing education for you.
I would say the strongest offerings are in adult outpatient, home health, SNF, hand therapy, women’s health, and acute care. Here is the complete list of categories.
- Acute Care
- Balance and Vestibular
- Biomechanics/ Functional Assessment
- Cardiovascular/ Pulmonary
- Differential Diagnosis/Screening
- Direct Access
- Ethics & Compliance
- Functional Movement and Biomechanics
- Hand Therapy
- Home Health
- Pelvic Rehabilitation
- Prevention and Wellness
- Treatment Modalities
- Women's Health
Another perk is that you get to watch an actual person present and see patient demonstrations! The videos are not a recorded power point presentation.
Opportunity for improvement:
If you work in pediatrics or on the fringes of OT, you should search whether there are courses available in your particular area of interest. There are some offerings available in these areas, but not as many as in the more mainstream settings. Keep reading for more information on how MedBridge will continue to grow and how as a member you can influence that growth and plans for expansion in these areas.
The Patient Care section provides two services—customized exercise programs and patient education handouts/videos.
For each patient, you can create a unique patient care program with exercises, information on their condition, and other patient education video/handouts.
Your patient then gets a unique access code to a patient portal that they can access from home. You also have the option to simply print off your handouts, as seen below.
Pros: The process is quick and easy!
I created the patient handout above in about two minutes. The handouts and videos feel modern and are well designed. Decades beyond some of the handouts I have dug out of the back of filing cabinets.
There is a full library of exercises in the following categories:
- Ankle and foot
- Cervical and jaw
- Elbow and hand
- Hip and knee
- Lumbar thoracic
In the patient education library, there are 85 orthopedic and neurological conditions with either a video or a handout.
There is also an option to upload your own exercises and videos.
As a patient, receiving quality, customized exercises and education through an online portal would feel above and beyond my expectation.
Opportunity for improvement:
As with every patient care library, not every exercise and piece of education you want will be there. There is an option to request new items (see below for the process).
I would like to see more diversity represented in the patient care section to more fully reflect the diversity of our patients (requesting now....)
This section has short videos (1-2 minutes) of orthopedic exam tests and manual therapy techniques.
Pros: The library is extensive.
The techniques are broken down into body regions. For example, in the hand/wrist orthopedic tests category, there are about 60 videos (ranging from Boyes test to Mishra Test II). This is more than I learned in OT school.
Areas for Improvement:
After spending some time with the videos, I could not come up with many critiques other than that I want more of them! I would love to see some categories beyond orthopedics and manual therapy… perhaps neurological tests would be the next logical category?
Questions for MedBridge
After spending time with my MedBridge account and talking to fellow users, I still had a couple of questions, and I was able to connect with a representative to get the following answers.
How would you define the ideal MedBridge user?
Anyone who wants to improve his or her clinical practice. MedBridge is a great solution for clinicians from all backgrounds, levels of experience, and levels of technical expertise. It is a tool not only to gain CEUs, but also a resource to continually improve your practice, from learning the latest research to learning new intervention strategies from industry thought-leaders.
MedBridge has a great solution for organizations. Over 650 clinics, hospitals, and other institutions subscribe their full staff to MedBridge as a tool to develop their clinical practice and patient care, helping their clients get better.
How many OT/PT/SLP courses does the site offer and how frequently do you add courses?
There are over 300 accredited courses available for clinicians, and we are adding new courses every week! Right now, we are launching about 20 new courses each month.
Do you have any course categories that you are focused on expanding this year? Or are all the categories expanded at the same rate?
2016 is a big year for our OT offerings. We are expecting to at least double the number of courses we have available for occupational therapists! We have courses across all major areas of OT, but some of the initiatives for 2016 include the development of “Certificate Programs” for the following areas:
- Hand Therapy
- School-Based Practice
- Sensory Integration
- Home Modifications
Are the courses NBCOT-approved?
As an AOTA-approved Continuing Education Provider, all of our courses count towards your NBCOT renewal. Even better, for every 1 contact hour completed from MedBridge’s AOTA approved courses, you earn 1.25 Professional Development hours through the NBCOT. If you are looking to renew your NBCOT this year, MedBridge is a great solution!
How often do you update the stock exercises/patient education?
Believe it or not, all of our exercises and patient education materials are filmed and built in house! We add 100-200 new exercises and new patient education 3D Model videos each month. In addition to our traditional patient education videos, we have also been adding new content such as:
- Handouts on fall prevention from the CDC
- Videos on posture and body mechanics
- Functional activity note cards (Coming Soon!)
What is the process and timeline for responding to a request for new exercises/education?
Our Patient Engagement team is very responsive! The exercise requests are quickly responded to with directions on where to find the content, if it exists, or a request for more information. You can request new specialties (such as aquatics, SCI, stroke) or specific exercises within specialties we already offer. We have some exciting new solutions in store, specifically for OTs, to be launched over the upcoming months!
Do you know of organizations that are buying MedBridge subscriptions for their entire staff? Seems like a great way to keep everyone on the same page.
Yes, just over half of of our subscribers are signed up by their organization through our Enterprise Solution. We work with organizations in all healthcare settings including hospitals, outpatient, home health, and SNF. Our customers range in size from five to several thousand staff members, and they purchase MedBridge to maintain consistency across the organization, not only for high-quality clinical education, but also for patient education and home exercise programs.
The true value to these organizations comes from MedBridge's administrative tools, which include a fully robust Learning Management System, allowing managers to upload their own content, use MedBridge content, create quizzes and more to create tracks of learning such as new employee orientation, compliance, competencies, and specializations. In addition, our robust Outcomes-Driven Reporting tool allows for transparency into your organization to identify areas of weakness and provide targeted clinical and patient education to improve outcomes.
Any site updates in the works that users will benefit from in the next year?
There are a lot, far too many to mention here! We continually engage our users to identify the best ways to improve the product. Some exciting upcoming product enhancements include:
- Mobile apps for our patient engagement and home exercise program (if you haven’t already, check out our course app here)
- Enhanced outcome reporting functions for organizations
- Continued expansion of our learning management system to better meet the needs of organizations.
As mentioned above, there is a great deal of new content added on a regular basis to ensure there are always new learning opportunities to help you provide the best quality of care to your patients.
THE BOTTOM LINE
The more you put into this platform, the more you will get out of it. The site is extremely interactive and ripe for continued growth. Therapists who work in outpatient, SNF, acute care, and private practices will find this a natural fit.
I hope other therapists will also consider a subscription and advocate for the courses, exercises, patient education and reference tools to fit their practices!
If this is the right education option for you, save $225 off of the list price and subscribe for $200 by using my promo code OTPotential. You can also use this affiliate link for the same discount!
Do you have any advice for potential MedBridge users? Share your experience below and I might incorporate it into the post when I do an update!
Please note that I am an affiliate of MedBridge and thus have an incentive to connect the right users with this service. However, this post was not sponsored or suggested by MedBridge. Descriptions and opinions are my own.