One in eight residents in the San Antonio area is tied to the military (250,000 veterans and 80,000 active-duty personnel).

Military City USA

San Antonio’s vast collection of military medical centers adds to the number and variety of clinical experiences available to students and graduates of all five UIW Schools of Health Professions:

  • Nursing and Health Professions
  • Optometry
  • Osteopathic Medicine
  • Pharmacy
  • Physical Therapy

Military Physical Therapy Treatment

The physical therapy profession has its roots in rehabilitating soldiers from World War I.

Combat environments pose extreme risk of traumatic injury, often resulting in life-long problems of chronic pain and limited mobility. Active duty soldiers and veterans make up a diverse and complex patient population and present needs for physical therapy treatment through injury prevention, in addition to rehabilitative care.

Military Physical Therapy Clinical Experience

  • Brooke Army Medical Center (San Antonio, Texas)

      • BAMC Physical Therapy Department
      • Center for the Intrepid
  • Audie Murphy Memorial VA Hospital (San Antonio, Texas)

      • Polytrauma Unit
      • Spinal Cord Injury Center
  • Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center

      • Wilford Hall Physical Therapy Clinic
      • Extended Care Therapy Center

Military City USA At-A-Glance

Joint Base San Antonio (JBSA) is the largest joint base in the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). San Antonio bases serve as a major hub for medical training, flight training, cyber operations, surveillance and military intelligence. JBSA is the largest single employer in San Antonio and is comprised of three primary locations:

  • JBSA Randolph
  • Fort Sam Houston
  • Lackland Air Force Base

Military Medicine

  • Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC)

    • JBSA Fort Sam Houston
    • 5 million-square-feet facility
    • State-of-the art facility
    • Army’s largest/busiest medical center
    • Army’s largest in-patient hospital (425 beds)
    • Level 1 Trauma Center
    • S. Army Institute
    • 58-outpatient specialty clinics
    • One million annual patient visits
  • Audie L. Murphy Memorial VA Hospital

    • JBSA Lackland
    • United States Department of Veterans Affairs
    • 462 Beds
    • Level II Research facility
    • Affiliation: University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
    • Comprehensive Emergency Center
  • Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center

    • JBSA Lackland
    • United States Department of Defense
    • 3 million square feet
    • Largest outpatient ambulatory surgical center in the U.S. Department of Defense
    • Serving more than 55,000 patients
    • 25 outpatient clinics

Military Physical Therapists

Military physical therapists are often the first healthcare provider to diagnose and manage musculoskeletal injuries. Treating service members closer to time of injury, particularly in combat, maximizes recovery and minimizes secondary or chronic morbidity.

U.S. Army physical therapists were first placed in Army Ranger Battalions in 2000. Within 10 months, the deployment readiness rate for the Ranger Battalions increased from 88% to 95%, meaning more Rangers were healthy and ready to operate under the Command’s mission standards.

Military physical therapists routinely deploy to locations around the world to provide care in combat zones, most recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.