Your Joint Care Team: Focused on Healing the Whole You

The Evarts Joint Center at Highland Hospital provides a comprehensive course of treatment. Your team includes a network of physicians, physicians’ assistant, nurse practitioners, orthopaedic nursing staff, physical therapists, social workers, and occupational therapists specializing in total joint care.

Our goal is to transition you from chronic joint pain and/or degenerative joint disease to living pain-free with greater mobility and independence. To achieve this, you, the patient will be involved in all aspects of your care. It is your responsibility, as well as ours, to work toward your independence.

The Roles of Our Team

  • Pre-admission Continuity of Care Team
    Our pre-admission Continuity of Care Team is made up of pre-screening nurses, community health nurses, and social workers whose goal is to make sure your discharge plan is one that will be safe and meet your health care needs. A member of our team may contact you before admission to schedule you for a class where you will:
    • Obtain and provide information that will help you prepare for admission and discharge
    • Learn about home health care agencies and rehabilitation facilities
    • Learn about the possibility of home visits by physical therapists from a community health agency

  • Orthopaedic Surgeons
    The Evarts Joint Center is staffed by highly trained orthopaedic surgeons with special interest in total joint replacement. Their goal is to provide the highest quality and innovative care for patients requiring total joint surgery or any one of our full range of treatments for all types and severity of disorders of the hip, knee, shoulder, and other joints.

  • Hospitalists
    A hospitalist is an acute-care specialist physician who manages your care in the hospital. Usually trained in internal medicine or geriatrics, a hospitalist has the skills and expertise needed to provide care specifically tailored to meet the unique needs of hospitalized patients and their families. Because a hospitalist has a special focus on patients in the hospital, he or she is more accessible to manage your inpatient care. A hospitalist can help you achieve a smooth, speedy recovery by following up on tests and adjusting your treatment throughout the day as necessary. The hospitalist is also close by in case of an emergency and is available to communicate with you and your family about your care. It’s very likely that your hospitalist will be a geriatrician.

  • Geriatricians
    A geriatrician is a doctor who has special training and skills in treating people with the special problems of older adults. Geriatricians manage and coordinate the medical care of older patients who may have multiple chronic conditions among multiple providers and specialists. They collaborate and work with other professionals, including social workers, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists, and others. Patients can rely on a geriatrician to oversee all aspects of their care. Their goal is to help patients lead comfortable, independent, and fulfilling lives.

  • Orthopaedic Nurse Manager/Leaders
    Your orthopaedic nurse leader will coordinate your care from the pre-operative class through discharge and post-discharge follow-up. He or she will:
    • Teach your pre-operative education class
    • Assist in coordinating your discharge (to outpatient services, home, or a rehabilitation unit)
    • Assist you in getting answers to your questions
    • Act as your liaison throughout your course of treatment from pre-op though post-discharge. You may call the orthopaedic nurse leader between the hours of 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. at any time before your surgery to ask questions. You can leave a message if he or she is not available or, if your concern is urgent, you can page your orthopaedic nurse leader at any time.

  • Physical Therapist
    Your physical therapist will teach you the proper exercises and how to perform those exercises to get you one step closer to home. The physical therapist will also emphasize patient education and home exercises which place control of much of the rehabilitation process in your hands.

  • Occupational Therapist
    An occupational therapist will evaluate your ability to take care of yourself following surgery. An occupational therapist looks at ADLs (activities of daily living). That is your ability to dress yourself, prepare your meals, transfer in and out of the shower or bathtub, etc. The occupational therapist will show you different ways of taking care of yourself while following the precautions set forth by your doctor and may recommend special assistive devices.

  • Rheumatologist
    A rheumatologist is an internist who is qualified by additional training and experience in the diagnosis and treatment of arthritis and other diseases of the joints, muscles, and bones. Many rheumatologists conduct research to determine the cause of and better treatments for these disabling and sometimes fatal diseases. The role the rheumatologist plays in health care depends on several factors and needs. Typically, the rheumatologist works with other physicians, sometimes acting as a consultant to advise another physician about a specific diagnosis and treatment plan. In other situations, the rheumatologist acts as a manager, relying on the help of many skilled professionals, including nurses, physical and occupational therapists, psychologists, and social workers. Teamwork is important, since musculoskeletal disorders are chronic. Health care professionals can help people with musculoskeletal diseases and their families cope with the changes the diseases cause in their lives.

  • Anesthesiologist
    You will meet your anesthesiologist on the day of your surgery. Your anesthesiologist will discuss the anesthesia to be used and explain how the drug works. If you or anyone in your family has had a reaction to anesthesia, be sure to tell the doctor. The anesthesiologist will also discuss what you can expect upon waking up in the recovery room after surgery. Discuss what pain medication will be administered and when and how it will be administered with your anesthesiologist and with your surgeon.

  • Social Work/Case Managers
    Social workers are available to you and your family before, during, and after your admission. They provide emotional support and counseling, resource assistance and advocacy, and discharge planning. As a member of the health care team, the social worker:
    • Receives referrals from hospital staff
    • Responds to patients’ and families’ requests for services
    • Routinely screens and evaluates patients
    • Evaluates the support provided by family, friends, or neighbors
    • Refers to community resources such as sliding fee-scale aides, family service agencies, geriatric services, or a community health nurse for home health services
    • Evaluates options and refers to an inpatient rehabilitation program, as necessary
Scroll to Top