INDEPENDENT SINCE 2020
This journey to independence took Jennifer out of direct patient care into an entirely new field, but she is still using her knowledge and skills as a therapist to help other therapists find success and peace of mind when working as an independent. Here is her story.
What is your name and discipline?
Jennifer Cigale, OT
Where did you go to school and when did you graduate?
Bowling Green State University / 1995 / BS Gerontology
Nova Southeastern University / 1999 / MOT
When and why did you decide to go “independent”?
I never made a conscious decision to go "independent" but, through my 20 years of clinical experience, it always seemed that the "independent" route fit my goals for time management, finances, career trajectory, family etc..
One of the most frustrating aspects of working as an Independent Contractor for me was the lack of benefits that are made available to therapists who work in this capacity.
Trust me, we can relate!
What Are You Doing Now?
In 2016, I became an Aflac Customer and took advantage of the policy benefits for four years. In 2020, I decided to make the leap out of direct patient care and became an Independent Agent for Aflac.
Working in healthcare is a very physically and mentally demanding career and, Independent Contractors do not have access to the same benefits as full time employees. I understand the needs of therapists and I am using my knowledge and experience to help therapists find the coverage that they need for themselves and their families in the event of an illness or injury.
What are your hopes/plans/dreams for the future?
I hope to build my business by showing others how to protect themselves, their income and their business while achieving a balance with my own work/life quality.
What tips do you have for others looking to go independent?
The healthcare industry is ever changing, do not get yourself boxed into one type of work setting or environment. The more flexible you can learn to be with your skill set, your time, and your resources the more equipped you will be to handle the rollercoaster.
(we totally agree)