Chatting with Frank Hann

Frank Hann, Encore Physical Therapy, Corvallis, Oregon

What path did you take to becoming a physical therapist?

Though I’ve worked in many fields – including a family-owned business, nonprofit program management and building renovation – with physical therapy I found the perfect balance of working with my hands and with people. I earned my Masters degree and my Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Shenandoah University in Virginia. I experienced a variety of clinical settings but especially enjoyed my orthopedic clinical at Bethesda Naval Hospital and my neurology clinical at Johns Hopkins University Hospital.

Give us an example of your typical client – one whom you enjoy working with and whom you can help.

In physical therapy you quickly learn that a “cookbook” approach to treatment will fail more often than it succeeds. I enjoy being a detective and discovering the root cause of a problem, then developing a program of treatment to resolve the problem – or in the case of a permanent injury, limit the effect on quality of life. I value the opportunity I have to work with patients from all walks of life.

Why did you decide to open Encore Physical Therapy?

If you want to strengthen a part of the body you need to push the present limits of the respective muscle or other tissue. You don’t push it so much that you promulgate injury, but enough to cause a response that makes it stronger. I have always found the greatest periods of personal satisfaction and growth for me have occurred when I challenge myself either physically or intellectually. After 13 years working in a local clinic, I was eager to pursue new opportunities for growth.

What’s your approach to developing a plan of treatment for each individual patient?

By choosing from the most effective of many techniques, I develop a program of treatment that is uniquely suited to each individual. Jones’s Strain Counter strain, Mulligan Mobilizations with Movement, Muscle Energy, Maitland and McKenzie techniques are very effective and I use them often. I emphasize patient education and awareness, especially in regard to posture. I want to see a patient develop the knowledge and skills necessary to manage their injury or illness as independently as possible.

Have you ever needed physical therapy yourself?

Many years ago, before I was a physical therapist, I fell and injured my back. I know now that recovery would have been greatly improved by physical therapy and would have taken much less time, but my doctor did not refer me to physical therapy. It took many years before I was able to develop confidence in my back again. That experience helped me understand how important it is that PTs take responsibility for educating the public and physicians about our role in helping patients recover.

What’s the key to choosing a physical therapist and why would you recommend that someone choose you for his or her PT?

When you choose a physical therapist, it’s important that you can communicate effectively with him or her. Space and equipment in a facility is important but not as much as the physical therapist’s commitment to a continuing pursuit of information, knowledge and skills necessary to provide you with the most effective and safe treatment available.

Is there anything else that you would like a patient to know about you?

My wife Deborah and I moved to Corvallis in 1997 to raise our family of four daughters. In Corvallis we found what we felt had been lost in the hustle and bustle of life in the Mid-Atlantic states: A sense of connection to the community.

We are fortunate in Corvallis to have an abundance of excellent medical care facilities and providers. Chris and I are determined that Encore Physical Therapy will provide you with a level of expertise, professionalism and compassion that will ensure your performance for a lifetime.

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