Borenstein discovered the importance of physical therapy and something he did in a way that was intuitively involving his child. “That was the right thing to me” Borenstein says. “That’s what I was looking to accomplish.” After having graduated from the Touro’s Lander College of Arts and Sciences and being accepted for admission to The School of Health Sciences Physical Therapy program which he graduated from in 2018 with the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.
“What an amazing program!” says Borenstein who is married to five children. “There isn’t one day in which I don’t keep in touch with my professors from the past. They’re not only instructors, they’re in the field of today. They are teachers and practitioners.”
They have taught him how to teach him. He is now an exercise therapist in Montefiore Medical Center, the University Hospital for Albert Einstein College of Medicine located in the Bronx. With 800 beds, this well-known medical center is made up of more than 10 hospitals and is considered to be one of the biggest medical facilities within New York State.
A person who believes exercising aerobically in some way will benefit everyone physically and emotionally. Borenstein has designed an in-patient fitness program designed for the psychiatric patients of Montefiore.
Before the COVID-19 vaccine was made available, physical therapists as well as all the other hospital doctors were in the psychiatric wards on a temporary basis because of the risk of a viral spread.
“Everyone was feeling so lonely particularly our psychiatric patients who struggled with social interaction,” he says. “People believe that psychiatric patients are the only ones who are homeless or addicted to drugs They’re usually wrong. We treat lawyers, doctors and bankers, business people as well as a number of bipolar and depressed individuals who felt more at a loss during the outbreak. The pandemic was a big factor in bringing us everything however, for many of them it was the catalyst that brought them in our clinic.”
The COVID-19 number decreased, and the availability of vaccinations increased to health professionals, Borenstein and others physical therapy therapists got permitted back in the psychiatric unit. He was immediately aware of the need of patients seeking contact with outsiders, familiar faces, and new faces.
“They were looking for interactions,” he says. “They would come up to us, engage in conversation and smile at the new look on their faces. I decided we should assist them in some way.”
His concept was to develop an fitness and mobility program in a group environment. “They are spending much of their time in solitude and lead a unmoving lifestyle,” he says. “This could be a chance for them to meet people around them and move.”
Twelve therapists, from various areas of interest including speech, occupational rehabilitation, and many moreand doctors are taking part in the program once a week. One of them is responsible for the playlist. “Upbeat and modern songs only” Borenstein urged, “for those who are able and would like to be part of.” The professionals have agreed to give up their lunchtime hours to participate in this multidisciplinary team.
Borenstein claims that the weekly class isn’t enough. Borenstein is currently seeking grants to make the program for mobility and exercise into a bigger research project which will prove through research what is known: “Exercise is both free and cost-effective.”
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