Get to Know Our Therapists: Erica Franks, DPT

See how Luna is reimagining physical therapy with a behind-the-scenes look at our team of PTs.
By Luna
Get to Know Our Therapists: Erica Franks, DPT

Meet Erica Franks, a physical therapist from Atlanta who recently joined the Luna team. We got the chance to sit down with Erica and get some insight into her life as a PT, discussing her experience treating patients over the years and the ways commitment to care has changed during the pandemic. We loved getting to know Erica, and we know you will too!

Luna enables one-on-one care

"Being a PT with Luna allows me more flexibility with personal and patient care. It gives me that work-life balance everyone is trying to have. With Luna I feel my work days are stress free which allows me to focus solely on my patients and not have to worry about anything else. I have worked in outpatient ortho since 2008 and have gone from seeing 2-4 patients within an hour in a busy clinic and managing a staff to now 1 on 1 with my patients. I get to really listen to the patients, focus on their impairments and treat and see faster results. I also really enjoy how Luna values their therapists. I have been in this field for 14 years and have worked hard to sometimes not even get a thank you from management and feel appreciated. I was someone tired of being overworked and not valued."

Focus on orthopedic care

"I have been dancing since I was 4 years old. I also was a cheerleader, on several dance teams, played soccer and tennis and loved swimming growing up. I went to Howard University and majored in Dance Arts. While at Howard I struggled with a knee and ankle injury and was always seeing a PT and took an interest in the field. My 3rd year at Howard I switched my major to Pre Physical Therapy with a minor in Dance Arts. From there, I’ve always had an interest in orthopedics because of my sports background."

Consistent availability

"In my 14 years as a PT, my most tough patient would actually be with Luna. She is someone whose diagnosis was originally lower extremity weakness. I was mentally prepared for one thing and everything changed within the first 5 minutes of the evaluation. Covid is still new to all of us and we are learning daily the effects it can have on your body and mental state once recovering. The patient has residual effects from covid, GI issues, hormonal issues, scar tissue from a failed myomectomy and weak core, overall deconditioned, severe anemia, and perimenopausal. After getting to know this patient during the assessment who was an active individual before all of this, it made me really switch from just being her PT but someone she could depend on. I knew that in order to get her better physically, her medical and mental health was just as important. I reached out to several MD friends of mine to get her appointments and in the right direction for healing. I also made myself available to this patient at all times. What I learned is that us as therapists spend more time with a patient than physicians so we are the ones that can truly help."

Quality over everything

"Since I’ve been treating now for 14 years I can tell quickly if someone will benefit from PT or need solely medical treatment. I had a patient on my schedule for BPPV/Vestibular Rehabilitation referred by her PCP. After visit number three, I realized her symptoms are suggestive of heart problems and possible Meneire’s disease which is not treated with PT. I educated the patient on my findings and then she confided in me that yes she does have heart problems which she’s aware of but didn’t feel the need to go into detail. I strongly advised her to see her cardiologist and neurologist again for further testing and she made an appointment. She then canceled her sessions until she has a follow up with her doctors. My approach is honesty. I want patients to get better and not just complete 8-12 sessions."

On-demand patient convenience

"I have seen patients get better faster with Luna than working with them in a clinic. These patients are 1 on 1 with us for 45-55 minutes and also more compliant with their sessions and home program. When patients come into an outpatient clinic they are scheduled with 2-3 other patients and sometimes things get missed. Being 1 on 1, I can correct their form, progress their home program and make sure they are understanding it without them having to worry about traffic and everyday stressors and answer their questions."

Good PT vs. GREAT PT

"A good PT experience is someone who gets better with a therapist in terms of their pain and function. This person may also see multiple PTs or PTA, and work with a PT technician in a clinic.

A great PT experience is someone given that 1 on 1 care with the same therapist from start to finish ensuring quality care. This patient not only gets better with pain and function, but also now understands how to manage their injury and understands the education behind it. They are also more active in their lives and understand how PT and diet go hand in hand.

My clinical approach is on the whole body. I educate my patients on not only exercise but diet which is so important in healing."

We're thrilled to have gotten the chance to chat with Erica, and we're lucky to have her on the team along with so many other PTs providing quality care directly to the home.

If you’re a physical therapist looking for more autonomy and flexibility in your career, Luna’s ready to work for you. 

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