CONWAY — Physical Therapy at Memorial Hospital recently welcomed Jaclyn MacDonald, DPT to the practice.

Joining therapist Stephanie Pavao, DPT, MacDonald offers one-on-one treatment of orthopedic and sports injuries, as well as soft tissue treatment.

MacDonald graduated from Husson University with her doctorate of physical therapy in May 2019.

Throughout her education experience, she developed a passion for outpatient physical therapy, and treating patients across the lifespan. MacDonald believes in a team-based approach and evidence-based practice to help patients achieve their therapy goals.

A native of Old Orchard Beach, Maine, MacDonald relocated to Mount Washington Valley to join the team at Memorial Hospital. A former collegiate pole-vaulter and life-long athlete, her athletic pursuits supported her decision to become a physical therapist.

She said, “I’ve been an athlete since I was 4 years old, playing soccer in Old Orchard Beach. I decided to join the track team in college, becoming a pole vaulter. It built a strong foundation for my interest in physical therapy. It fueled my passion to help people live well and do what they want to do in life. Injuries hold you back as both an athlete and as a community member alike. I believe we should all have the opportunity to access and move through our communities confidently; physical therapy is a great way to achieve that goal.”

MacDonald talked about the challenges of physical therapy and why she finds it compelling.

“It’s always a puzzle. Two patients with a similar diagnosis could present in different ways; it’s never the same thing twice. They may have common themes but you have to play detective and keep an open mind. As a physical therapist, I can be creative and innovative, which makes coming into work so enjoyable.”

While moving away from her beloved ocean hometown was difficult, she is excited by the prospect of living in the White Mountains. She added, “I am an avid hiker and I love being outside. I’ve always had great vacations here and never wanted to leave at the end of my stay! I love being in the mountains. I am excited to join the White Mountain community, especially for ski season!”

But it wasn’t just the scenery that attracted her to Memorial Hospital. The organization and the other physical therapist in the practice were draws as well.

MacDonald joins Stephanie Pavao, DPT. Pavao is an experienced physical therapist with specialization with vestibular issues as well as offering advanced therapies such as the Graston Technique.

“Stephanie immediately offered mentorship, which is great for me as a new therapist,” MacDonald said. “She was so welcoming. I’m grateful for the experience and advice she has to offer.”

MacDonald is accepting new patients. To get started, she said, “New patients come in for an evaluation. We take an hour and they’ll receive some interventions on the first visit. Then working as a team, the patient and I will design their plan of care to have the best possible outcome. It’s not just handing them exercises, it’s a conversation and a collaboration with the patient.”

For more information, call (603) 733-5921 or go to memorialhospitalnh.org.

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