Participant Testimonial: Jose A., “I sometimes even answered back to the Digital Therapist”
Jan 23, 2019 • 3 min read
Jose leads a painting unit in a factory that builds buses. He’s responsible for painting thousands of buses a year, and he lives up to that responsibility with a humble smile. The only time a smack of anguish taints this interview comes when he talks about the 130 people he leads: “Many people, many families depend on me,” he says, “and this is why I had to come back to work as soon as possible.”
Jose is a chipper, lively 58-years-old guy who had to undergo two hip replacement surgeries in one year. So when one of our physical therapists approached him before his first surgery to explain what SWORD Health’s digital therapist is about, he quickly overcame any doubts he might have:
“I had already had traditional physical therapy before. I had to rush out of the office, deal with the traffic and find a parking space. [When I finally started therapy] the therapist would come over, tell me which exercises to perform and then leave to check on another patient. I didn’t even know if I was doing the exercises correctly.”
MSK care made easy
SWORD Health was a no-brainer for Jose: “I could leave work at 7 or 7:30 pm” and still make it in time to have therapy at home. Persistent as he is, he continuously tried to beat his records and, even if he had evening arrangements: “I would leave at 10:45 pm so that I wouldn’t miss a session”. It came to the point that he started bickering with the digital therapist, “but she always ended up being right.”
So when the time came for the second hip surgery, “I called Sarah [his physical therapist] and said: “I need my left leg to recover as well as the right leg did.” It was an amazing recovery; even my doctor said I should get a gold medal for hip surgery recoveries.” It must really be the case because the medical board that evaluated Jose’s ability to go back to work was astonished as well.
Jose had medical permission to go back to work one and a half month after surgery, an absolute achievement. Jose knows his perseverance played a crucial role in his recovery: “I felt a huge responsibility towards myself and you guys. Compliance is essential. (…) It’s one thing to do the exercises; to do them correctly is an entirely different thing. This [feedback] is why I found your product so interesting. There is no doubt it was really helpful to work with SWORD Health.”
Jose started working at age 13, and he comes from a generation that didn’t get as much formal education as the younger people working with him. Someone a little less kind-hearted would probably belittle the relevance of formal education in favor of their personal journey, but Jose sees it as an advantage: “I always tell my team to learn from our experience but also to integrate whatever knowledge they have acquired to make our work better.”
This love of progress is part of the reason why he felt so compelled to work with us: “I’m used to working with innovative projects and people, so I fully embraced [SWORD].” Lucky us.