Neurologic Residency Program

Siskin Hospital is committed to the development of clinical skills and specialized knowledge of its clinicians.

Siskin Hospital’s Neurologic Residency Program prepares therapists to provide our neurologic patients with the highest standard of care. Using the most current evidence-based practices achieves better outcomes and improves patient satisfaction with the therapy services they receive.

Program Mission

The Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation Neurologic Residency Program will provide advanced education and clinical experience to physical therapists in the field of neurology in order to promote improved patient care and outcomes, establish advanced clinicians in the field of neurologic physical therapy, and support growth of the neurologic physical therapy program at this facility.

The residency program is designed to support the hospital mission. Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation is committed to providing a wide range of high quality physical rehabilitation services where positive outcomes are achieved that benefit the individual served, as well as the community at large.

Graduates of the Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation Neurologic Residency Program will complete their residency in preparation to acquire their Board Certification as a Neurologic Clinical Specialist (NCS).  The examination for this credential is offered through the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties in the spring following completion of the residency program.

Program Year

Program length: 12 months in duration

  • January 4, 2021-December 31, 2021

Rotations: 4 clinical rotations (12-14 weeks each) (All clinical rotations are at the Siskin Hospital Main Campus, downtown Chattanooga)

  • Inpatient Brain Injury Unit
  • Inpatient CVA Unit
  • Inpatient SCI Unit
  • Outpatient Department (Neurodegenerative conditions, vestibular pathologies, etc.) or Inpatient Float
Clinical Experience

The resident will provide patient care as a part of our inpatient and outpatient clinical staff with focus on patients that present with neurologic pathologies listed in the Description of Residency Practice (DRP).  He/she will also participate in three hours of mentored treatment time, two hours of meeting with his/her mentor to discuss weekly goals and discuss patient care or planning treatment sessions, and four hours per week of didactic experiences (competencies on use of technologies, planning presentations, development of case study/research, online coursework).

Didactic Experience

Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation uses the program developed by the Institute for Knowledge Translation (ITK) as the main didactic component of the program. The curriculum includes online educational modules developed to provide education on the items identified in the Description of Residency Practice; online mentoring; journal clubs; in-person weekend workshops in Indianapolis, Indiana; a practice examination; and various onsite learning experiences. The cost of the online curriculum will be covered by the facility; however, the resident will be responsible for the cost associated with travel to the weekend workshops and the cost associated with the NCS examination. Included in the online curriculum is content that focuses on the most current evidence-based practice, integration of knowledge into practice, leadership, statistics and critical inquiry, and information on neurologic pathologies listed in the primary health conditions chart in the DRP. The IKT will also provide one practice examination, which will be completed in preparation for the NCS Examination.

  • Tilt table
  • Erigo
  • Lokomat
  • Walk Aide
  • FES Cycle
Shadowing Experiences and Labs
  • The resident will have the opportunity to shadow a PT/OT team in specialty movement disorder clinics (ALS and HD).
  • MBSS shadowing experience
  • Botox/Spasticity shadowing experience
  • Vision assessments
  • Serial Casting Lab
  • Seating and Positioning Lab
Community Involvement and Education

The resident will complete an educational presentation on the topic of their choice to a local organization (i.e. Support group: Brain Injury, Stroke, Parkinson’s Disease, Spinal Cord Injury, Multiple Sclerosis). They will also be required to attend one meeting for each support group.

The resident will also complete an on-site lunch-and-learn presentation on a topic of their choice to provide education to other clinicians or support staff.


Research is important to the growth and development of the field of physical therapy.  Siskin Hospital promotes research by requiring the resident to conduct a case study during their residency. The resident will identify a case subject during their first clinical experience in order to complete a case report by the completion of the residency program.


An external candidate resident will be paid a rate equivalent to an entry-level physical therapist salary at the facility.  Internal candidates will maintain their current salary and benefits.

The resident will be offered benefits of a full-time employee including health insurance coverage and PTO. The resident will be a part of the weekend and holiday staff rotation.  The facility will cover the cost of the online curriculum, but all travel expenses for off-site weekend courses will be covered by the resident. The resident is also responsible for any costs associated with the Neurologic Clinical Specialist Examination.

Faculty and Administration

Tod Cain, MBA, OTR/L, LNHA, FACHE-Vice President of Administration
Aileen SanLuis, PT, Inpatient Physical Therapy Supervisor
Christina Metz, PT, DPT, NCS, CBIS, CSCS –Program Director and Clinical Mentor, Inpatient Rehabilitation Brain Injury Unit
Matt Annessi, PT, DPT, NCS, CBIS- Clinical Mentor Inpatient Rehabilitation, Brain Injury Unit
Brett Fielder, PT, DPT, CSRS, CBIS- Clinical Mentor Inpatient Rehabilitation, Stroke Unit
Meredith Russell, PT, DPT, CSRS, CBIS- Clinical Mentor Inpatient Rehabilitation, Stroke Unit
Katherine Gibson, PT, DPT, CBIS- Clinical Mentor Inpatient Rehabilitation, Stroke Unit
Carolyn Cuppage, PT, MSPT- Clinical Mentor Inpatient Rehabilitation, Brain Injury Unit
Jorden Watson, PT, DPT- Clinical Mentor Inpatient Rehabilitation, Spinal Cord Injury
Vickie Blalock, PT Clinical Mentor Outpatient Rehabilitation

Application Process

Acceptance to the program will be based on the candidate’s ability to provide exceptional patient-centered care, advanced critical thinking skills, and dedication to continued learning and clinical growth. Qualified applicants will have demonstrated professional investment and development through research exposure, evidence-based practice and leadership opportunities. Flexibility, time management and communication skills are highly valued, as is the versatility to work in varying environments with a multidisciplinary team.

Applications will be processed through the American Physical Therapy Association’s (APTA) Residency/Fellowship Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (RF-PTCAS) or through the hospital internal applicant process.

  • In-person or Skype interviews are required.
  • We will not sponsor visas for international applicants.
  • There is a supplemental application fee of $50 submitted to Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation for external candidates.
  • Please submit two letters of recommendation via mailing address listed below. Supplemental content (resume/CV/cover letter) can be emailed directly to the program director.
  • Applications will also be accepted via American Physical Therapy Association’s (APTA) Residency/Fellowship Physical Therapist Centralized Application Service (RF-PTCAS). The resident will be able to reference the website for instructions on how to apply.

Please submit:

  • Resume, cover letter, and CV
  • Two Letters of Recommendation (mailed)
  • All materials due by November 6, 2020

Send to:

Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation Neurologic Residency Program
Attn: Christina Metz, Program Director
1 Siskin Plz
Chattanooga, TN 37403

Or via email:

Program Duration: 12 months
Accreditation: Granted candidacy status, pending site survey for accreditation
Application period: September 1, 2020 to November 6, 2020
On-site Interview Date: Tentatively November 25, 2020
Admission decision: Following completion of review of candidates and interviews (no later than December 9, 2020)
Program start: Spring 2021 (January 4, 2021)
Prerequisites: The applicant must be a graduate from an accredited physical therapy program, have a valid Tennessee physical therapist license, or acquire license prior to residency start date.

The program director can be contacted for further information at:  or

Note: American Board of Physical Therapy Residency and Fellowship Education (ABPTRFE) has granted Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation candidacy status and is pending an ABPTRFE site visit in pursuit of accreditation. Achieving candidacy status is not an indication that ABPTRFE will automatically grant initial accreditation. Siskin Hospital has enrolled its first participant under candidacy status.  Siskin will be accepting applicants for 2021 beginning September 1, 2020. Also note, residency programs are not accredited by Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.