Stella Wingate is a Physical Therapist at the Vereen Rehabilitation Center and Colquitt Regional Medical Center. She is originally from the Philippines, where she graduated with a B.S. in Physical Therapy at Cebu Doctors’ University and received her licensure. She has been with the Vereen Center since 2005.
“I guess they liked me,” Wingate said with a laugh. “I was looking for a job in the Philippines, but it can be very competitive over there. I wanted to branch out, so I applied over here. They were willing to work with my work visa, which can get complicated, and I was very surprised but glad at the same time.”
Wingate has always wanted to be a Physical Therapist and loves interacting with her patients.
“I like problem solving and being able to figure out what’s wrong with my patients,” she said. “I then get to help them with their issue and find the relief they’re looking for. It’s definitely rewarding, even though that sounds cliché. I like that I’m always on my toes.”
In Wingate’s 13 years at Colquitt Regional Medical Center, she has treated everyone from an infant with torticollis to a 90-year-old with balance issues. She treats them all.
“My day starts at 8 a.m. at the center, where I have a list of patients I see every day,” she said.
Wingate recently obtained her aquatic certification with Aquatic Therapy and Rehab Institute, and now she gets to do even more.
“Our pool at the Vereen Center is great,” she said. “It’s 92 degrees, and there’s a treadmill under water that patients can use to help them be more active with less pain on their joints. You may be having difficulty lifting your leg, but the water helps with that. It really helps with strengthening.”
Wingate loves the Vereen Center and wouldn’t want to work anywhere else.
“I love my patients,” she said. “I love being an Aquatic Therapist. I just love everything about my job. It’s challenging but rewarding.”
She went on to speak about the facility and all it has to offer.
“All the therapists at the Vereen Center are great,” she said. “They are all very skilled and knowledgeable. The center also as a wide variety of equipment, such as a cryotherapy chamber that can help athletes return to their training at a quicker rate with less soreness. We are very proud of our facility.”
Even though she just received her aquatic certification, she doesn’t want to stop there.
“I’m looking to get specialization in orthopedic just because we see a lot of that in our facility and it is something I am interested in,” she said. “I want to continue learning and improving my skills.”