West alumna overcomes rock-climbing injury, reaches new heights with WSC

West alumna overcomes rock-climbing injury, reaches new heights with WSC

Carly Broderick, D.C. (West ’18) was on her way to pursuing a medical career when she suffered a rock-climbing injury while completing the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) program at Kent State University in 2012.

When her injuries did not respond well to medical treatment, she was referred to a local sports chiropractor.

Dr. Broderick subsequently recovered from her injuries, earned her M.P.H., and resumed enjoying her favorite sport. She also embarked upon a new career path.

“Having my injuries properly diagnosed and managed caused me to look into becoming a chiropractor, and aligning myself with a more sports-focused approach,” said Dr. Broderick, who worked close to full-time hours at a local rock-climbing gym while concurrently attending Palmer West.

Dr. Carly Broderick with Mufudzi Chihambakwe, D.C. (above) and with fellow staff (below) at the WSC clinic in Shoshong, Botswana, who assist Dr. Broderick with translating, and explaining chiropractic to patients.

Now, just a few months removed from stepping onto the graduation stage, the Olympia, Wash., native is already taking her career to impressive heights by providing care for underserved patient populations at World Spine Care (WSC) clinics based in Mahalapye and Shoshong, Botswana.

During the course of completing her internship in the Palmer Chiropractic Clinics, Dr. Broderick aspired to pursue a non-traditional career path, and began to explore opportunities working outside the U.S. She was introduced to World Spine Care, a multi-national charity organization, whose global mission is to improve lives in under-served communities by “creating a world in which everyone has access to the highest quality spine care possible.”

WSC currently maintains clinics in India, Ghana, Botswana, and the Dominican Republic. While developing a model of care for spinal conditions is a primary focus of World Spine Care, embedding clinics in the local health care system is also an integral component of the WSC health care paradigm, to create a sustainable model of care that can be expanded throughout the country, with cooperation of the host government.

“I have always been interested in serving under-represented groups,” said Dr. Broderick. “WSC provides an excellent opportunity for providing long-term, evidence-based care. What I like about WSC, in particular, is that there are always clinicians present, and the clinics are permanently established.”

(Above) During a recent trip back to the U.S., Dr. Broderick stopped by the West campus to speak with students about her experience of providing care at WSC clinics in Botswana. (Below) Following her presentation, Palmer West Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Brian Nook, D.C., informed Dr. Broderick that Hawkgrips agreed to donate a Gold set of their IASTM tools (similar to those featured in the photo), and Performance Health offered to donate a substantial amount of Theraband kinesiology tape.

The Mahalapye and Shoshong clinics where Dr. Broderick provides care are within the public hospital system in Botswana. She credits her Palmer West clinic experience for preparing her to work in a multidisciplinary setting.

“Since the WSC clinics are based within the hospitals, we have significant interaction and cross-referral with other specialists,” said Dr. Broderick, who is in the process of initiating her participation in the Internationally Certified Chiropractic Sports Practitioner program sponsored by The International Federation of Sports Chiropractic (FICS).

“We are often one of the first-providers the patient sees, and the ability to recognize and refer serious medical issues is paramount. I felt well-prepared to work in this integrated setting, thanks to a great clinic-experience working with Dr. (Ti) Pence (West ’06, now working for Stanford Health Care at one of their corporate-affiliated clinics), who helped make me a competent clinician.”

For Dr. Broderick and the other health care providers (who volunteer their services, but are provided housing and transportation), building personal relationships with patients and having a positive impact on their lives is extremely rewarding – which she shared in a special presentation for current Palmer West students during a recent trip back to the U.S.

“I was originally planning to work with WSC for two months,” said Dr. Broderick, now back in Botswana.

“However, I loved my initial experience so much, and feel it’s such an invaluable experience — especially for a new graduate – that I’m planning to stay for a year, potentially longer!”

To learn more about the World Spine Care organization: www.worldspinecare.org/