One wonders when Bertha Puig started her physical therapy and prosthetics practice over 20 years ago if her son, Robert, would follow in her footsteps? At the time she started the practice she was quite the pioneer, one of a handful of women to venture into a predominantly male field. She broke many barriers for women, not only in the Valley, but also in South Texas. She gained the respect and trust of many doctors as a result of her dedication and knowledge.
Bertha had encouraged her son to join forces with her, but rather, he had bigger dreams of going to law school one day. But Robert soon changed his mind when he realized that he was far too laid back to be an attorney and argue all the time. Eventually, he decided to go to school for physical therapy and then return to the Valley to join his mother in her practice.
While attending college, he met Kevin Abers, a San Antonio native. Abers was dating a Valley girl at the time, and once he asked her to marry him, he knew it was only a matter of time before she would want to move back to the Valley to be with her family. He came down to the Rio Grande Valley and immediately began working for the Puigs. “This has been my one and only job,” Abers said candidly. “The Puigs have been good to me. Robert’s mom is my second mom and I love her very much.” Abers had certainly taken to Valley life along with his wife and two boys, aged 11 and 9.
Robert Puig loves the Rio Grande Valley. “Unless you’re from here, you probably don’t ‘get it’, but anyone who lives here will understand what I mean. I love everything about the Valley, the people, the culture, the climate, the food…especially the food!”
Both men agree that Bertha’s strong influence has caused them to further their education; Robert and Kevin received their Doctorate in Physical Therapy in May 2013. “This advanced education is what allows us to deliver the most effective treatment for all the different diagnoses we treat. Caring for people who are broken, hurt, and in pain is why I wanted to practice physical therapy. Seeing people walk out of our doors smiling, feeling great, and able to get back to what they use to do or can ‘now do’- we just helped make their life better! There is no greater reward than that!” said Puig.
Today, RGV Prosthetics is in five locations and sees to the needs of thousands of patients who come to them for a variety of reasons. Abers explained that 90 percent of the patients come with orthopedic needs – many of them are post-surgery patients. Some have had knee replacements, some have experienced sport injuries, and yet, others need to relearn how to function physically after an accident.
Prosthetic care is one of the most important elements of their practice though. More local doctors are discovering the great care this team provides and recommend them to their patients. Many of the patients are dealing with a host of issues; and getting use to a new prosthetic can be overwhelming. To suddenly have to walk with an artificial limb, or use an artificial hand can be distressing, and RBV Prosthetics is there to help.
From the first consult, where an overall evaluation is taken, goals discussed, and pain management put into place, to the final visit where the patient has met the goals, the staff of RGV Prosthetics is there.
Abers said, “Service and results is our number one goal.” Every patient wants to go to a medical practice where the staff is professional, pleasant, knowledgeable, and meets all of their needs. Since the majority of patients are seen more than once, it is important to build rapport and trust with each patient.
At all times, RGV Prosthetics aims to offer the best physical care and post-operative surgical know-how to all their patients. With over 20 years experience, and such a well-qualified team, it is easy to see why RGV Prosthetics is flourishing in the Valley!