Union Orthotics & Prosthetics Co. Clinician Spotlight: Bjoern Schmidt, CPO & Prosthetic Clinical Team Lead

Union Orthotics & Prosthetics Co. has over 50 clinicians in our 19 locations throughout Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania. Each clinician has a passion for their craft and different specializations that allow them to provide the best care for our patients. Periodically, we like to highlight or share some important news about one of our clinicians to show our appreciation for their expertise in our field. This allows our patients and staff to get to further know these individuals and celebrate what makes them great employees and exceptional practitioners. Presently, we are celebrating Bjoern Schmidt, CPO, our new Prosthetic Clinical Team Lead.

With almost 30 years of experience in prosthetics and orthotics, Bjoern brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to our team. We are confident that his leadership will further enhance our prosthetic department and improve outcomes for our patients. Please join us in welcoming Bjoern Schmidt to his new role!

In 1996, Bjoern began his journey in the O & P field in Germany where he earned his Certification in Orthotics and Prosthetics. In 2005, he moved to Pittsburgh, PA with his wife Yun, of 20 years. Bjoern also spent 6 years working in the O&P field in New Jersey and upon returning to Pittsburgh in 2020 he was hired at Union O & P. You can normally find him working at our Robinson and Liberty offices.

Q & A with Bjoern

How long have you been with the company?
I have been with the company for 3 years and 5 months.

Where did you study?
Federal College of Orthopedic Technology Dortmund Germany.

How did you get into the field?
I am 3rd generation prosthetist& orthotist. My grandpa and my uncle did work and are working as a Prosthetist and Orthotist.

What is your clinical specialization? 
Lower extremity prosthetics.

What made you decide to specialize in prosthetics?
I do like working as a prosthetist because it is very rewarding. If you do your job well and ensure the correct socket fit, the patient will walk and usually go back to living a very independent life. 

What do you like most about working in O & P?
Working with my colleagues, doctors, and physical therapists and together finding solutions to help the patient achieve their goals to walk and be independent, and move forward from a traumatic experience in their lives.

How do you think new technology could change the direction of O & P?
There have been great technological advances regarding prosthetic feet and knees such as Microprocessors. I would like to see a new interface connecting the residual limb to the prosthetic leg itself. The biggest improvement to the socket fit of a prosthetic leg itself was the silicon liner. I do believe it is time to explore a new way of connecting the prosthetic leg to the patient. 

What is your greatest achievement/what are you most proud of in your professional career?
I do believe my biggest achievement is having earned my German Master’s degree in orthopedic technology, which prepared me well to establish myself professionally wherever I go.

What is your biggest joy in working with patients?
Having them succeed in their goal of living a functional, productive, and happy life after an amputation.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into prosthetics and orthotic care?
Working as a prosthetist & orthotist is not a desk job. It is a craft and you will get dusty and you smell glue all day and go home with dirty clothes. But it is the best feeling you can get when the prosthetic leg or brace that you build fits like a glove and patient is walking.

What do you do outside of work?
I like to go on bicycle rides with my wife in and around Pittsburgh on weekends. I also like to ride my motorcycle. I started to row indoors and I do enjoy it. During vacations, I enjoy traveling to other parts of the country and abroad: East Asia, Europe, Latin America…etc.

What is a fun fact about yourself?
I will let others find out and comment on that.

What is your favorite food?
I like it all. Italian, Greek, Peruvian, American, Chinese, and of course German food. But no liver!  


Union Orthotics & Prosthetics Co. is a family-owned and operated company with over one hundred years of service. We have always been dedicated to providing the highest quality patient care with a professional and compassionate approach. Our services and techniques are continuously being upgraded to achieve the highest standard of excellence.

Blog: Kathryn Painter / Production: Scott Kozelnik