Meagan Ortega (DPT '20)

Meagan Ortega smiling in front of a table of crafts for Brooke's Blossoms.

Although she has only just begun her second year in the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program at Texas Woman's University Institute of Health Sciences – Houston Center, Meagan Ortega has already made a lasting impact in both her professional and local communities.

Ortega represents the DPT program as a South Eastern District Student Liaison for the Student Physical Therapy Association. In this role, she attends district meetings to keep up to date with the current legal climate and future of physical therapy, including the current push to help end the opioid crisis in America.

“As physical therapists, we have the tools to help our patients fight the battle of optimizing movement, health and wellness,” Ortega said. “But without direct access (a patient’s ability to seek therapy without a doctor’s prescription), the people we care for are having to fight alone. As health care professionals, all we want is to improve our patients’ quality of life. Being an activist in our profession as a student is how I can help our patients in the near future.”

However, this isn’t the only way Ortega is making an impact in her profession. She also volunteers as a member of the Physical Therapy Global Access Project. The organization’s mission is to “bridge the gap between healthcare and the community.” Ortega will soon be traveling with the organization to clinics in Guatemala to provide pro-bono services and health education to impoverished communities.

As physical therapists, we have the tools to help our patients fight the battle of optimizing movement, health and wellness. But without direct access (a patient’s ability to seek therapy without a doctor’s prescription), the people we care for are having to fight alone.

It’s not just through physical therapy that Ortega is touching the lives of others. While pursuing her undergraduate degree, Ortega learned of Brooke’s Blossoms. Through this organization, volunteers make “blossoms” (also known as headbands) for children who are fighting cancer. Ortega recently sought out the help of fellow TWU Houston students in making some 100 headbands.

“Making headbands for these children does not only bring a long needed smile to the faces of children undergoing cancer treatments, but can hopefully have an impact on the individuals around them. Smiles are contagious, so why not spread the happiness,” said Ortega.

While not quite sure of her plans upon graduation in 2020, Ortega is considering a number of options including pediatrics, geriatrics, orthopedics or maybe even neurology. However, one thing she is sure of is that the opportunities provided to her by TWU Houston will surely come into play in her future career.

“Wherever I do end up, I know that I will be prepared to give the best quality of treatment because of my schooling here at TWU Houston in the Texas Medical Center,” said Ortega.

Wherever I do end up, I know that I will be prepared to give the best quality of treatment because of my schooling here at TWU Houston in the Texas Medical Center.

Page last updated 3:43 PM, October 16, 2018