Jul 05

Faculty and alumni are published in the American Journal of Occupational Therapy

CongrC1 PAGE.inddatulations to Dr. Tam Humbert and alums, Christine Maley (MS, ’14), Nicole Pagana (MS, ’14), and Christa Velenger (MS, ’14) on their recent publication.  The full citation (in APA format, of course) is as follows:   

Maley, C. M,. Pagana, N., K., Velenger, C. A., & Humbert, T. K. (2016). Dealing with major life events and transitions: A systematic literature review on and occupational analysis of spirituality.  American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 70(4), 7004260010p1-7004260010p6. DOI: 10.5014/ajot.2016.015537. You can find the article here.   

May 31

Electroencephalographic Neurofeedback Research in Occupational Therapy

Our own Christine Achenbach was recognized recently by The Foundation for Neurofeedback and Applied Neuroscience for her research regarding the use of electroencephalographic neurofeedback (EEG NFB) as an intervention in O.T.  EEG NFB is a form of biofeedback that uses sensors placed on the scalp to capture brainwaves to interface with a computer. It is now recognized as an evidence-based approach for treating attention deficit hyperactive disorder and is being researched for other neurological conditions including traumatic brain injury (TBI) and cerebral vascular accident (CVA).  Ms. Achenbach is interested in using neurofeedback to reduce symptoms of anxiety so that individuals can engage in meaningful daily occupations.

Styrofoam head with EEG wires on it and wires attached to laptop computer

 

One outcome from her research so far is that one of our young alumna is now pursuing certification in biofeedback that will also allow her to do NFB as a modality!  Ms. Achenbach hopes to continue some research and will attempt to publish a summary of this year’s and previous years’ EEG NFB research.

 

 

May 19

Hot off the Presses – Spirituality and Occupational Therapy: A Model for Practice and Research

spirituality bookWe are pleased to announce that Dr. Tam Humbert published a book,  Spirituality and Occupational Therapy:  A Model for Practice and Research.  Published by AOTA Press, the book reflects Dr. Humbert’s interests in spirituality and how occupational therapists can integrate spirituality into daily practice to enhance clients’ well-being and occupational performance. Considering multiple perspectives of spirituality and based on several years of research and practice, this book also includes concepts and meaning that were derived from several E-town graduate research projects that were mentored by Dr. Humbert. 

Get more information about this new and exciting book at AOTA’s website!

Oct 02

POTA conference features Etown students, recent graduates, and faculty

POTA conference logo 2015Check out these presentations by Etown students, recent graduates, and faculty, all of whom were accepted for the Pennsylvania Occupational Therapy Association’s annual conference.  Click HERE for more information about the conference.  Early registration ends October 4th. We hope to see you there!

FRIDAY OCTOBER 23, 2015

2:00 PM

  • Non-pharmacological InterventionsforSundowning Behaviors: AMOHO Perspective
    • Poster Presentation:  Robin Kreiser, B.S. OTS, Tamera Keiter Humbert, D.Ed., OTR/L
  • An OT’s Guide to Patient Reported Outcomes
    • Presentation:  Ann Marie Potter, MA, OTR/L
  • Program Development for a Youth Intervention Center
    • Presentation:  Jessica Krueger, MS, OT (’15); Emily Martin, MS, OT (’15); Lauren Neiswender, MS, OT (’15), Bethany Panchak, MS, OT (’15); & Judy Ericksen, Ph.D., OTR/L

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2015

7:00 AM

  • Treating SPD & Attachment Issues: An Update
    • Presentation:  Christine Achenbach, MEd, OTR/L
  • Dental Care and Intellectual Disability: Occupational Therapy’s Role
    • Short Presentation: Marla Peiffer, B.S. OTS & Kerri Hample, OTD, OTR/L

10:30 AM

  • Comparison of Activities and Participation Across Cancer Types
    • Poster Presentation:  Ann Marie Potter, MA, OTR/L; Monica Loranger, MS, OT (’15);Carly Stull, MS, OT (’15); & Megan Tursi, MS, OT (’15)

 

Sep 08

Does Occupational Therapy Have a Role in Suicide Prevention?

September is Suicide Prevention awareness month.  Of course, this is important every day.  The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) has various suicide prevention information and resources available for consumers and for professionals.  Did you know that SAMSHA has identified risk and protective factors?

Suicide prevention logo with crisis telephone numberRisk factors* include:

  • Mental disorders, particularly mood disorders, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders and certain personality disorders
  • Alcohol and other substance use disorders
  • Impulsive and/or aggressive tendencies
  • History of trauma or abuse
  • Major physical illnesses

All of those risk factors above represent clients whom OTs may serve – in various practice settings, many of which are not considered mental health settings. Next, look at the protective factors* below:

  • Effective clinical care for mental, physical and substance use disorders
  • Strong connections to family and community support
    • family may include a sense of duty to care for others or to care for pets
  • Support through ongoing medical and mental health care relationships
  • Skills in problem solving, conflict resolution and handling problems in a non-violent way
  • Cultural and religious beliefs that discourage suicide and support self-preservation

Did you notice anything? Yes, many of the protective factors revolve around meaningful occupational activities and roles, e.g. family & social support, spiritual or faith-based values, caring relationships, and problem-solving or coping skills.  OT can address these skills, roles, and factors in any setting.  How do you address psychosocial health, coping, and engagement in meaningful occupations for your clients?

*Risk and protective factors are selected from the entire list at www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org. Risk and protective factors are predictive, not absolute.

Aug 07

Blue Jays accepted for presentations at the 2015 POTA conference!

Hot off the presses…or at least from the Pennsylvania Occupational Therapy Association (POTA).  Etown faculty, recent graduates and current students will be giving various presentations at the annual Pennsylvania Occupational Therapy Association’s annual Conference in October.  Good job, blue jays! The conference is in Scranton, PA.  We hope to see you there!

POTA conference logo 2015

FRIDAY OCTOBER 23, 2015

2:00 PM

  • Non-pharmacological Interventions for Sundowning Behaviors:  A MOHO Perspective
    • Poster Presentation:  Robin Kreiser, B.S. OTS, Tamera Keiter Humbert, D.Ed., OTR/L
  • An OT’s Guide to Patient Reported Outcomes
    • Presentation:  Ann Marie Potter, MA, OTR/L
  • Program Development for a Youth Intervention Center
    • Short Presentation:  Jessica Krueger, MS, OT (’15); Emily Martin, MS, OT (’15); Lauren Neiswender, MS, OT (’15), Bethany Panchak, MS, OT (’15); & Judy Ericksen, Ph.D., OTR/L

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2015

7:00 AM

  • Treating SPD & Attachment Issues: An Update
    • Presentation:  Christine Achenbach, MEd, OTR/L
  • Dental Care and Intellectual Disability: Occupational Therapy’s Role
    • Short Presentation: Marla Peiffer, B.S. OTS & Kerri Hample, OTD, OTR/L

10:30 AM

  • Comparison of Activities and Participation Across Cancer Types
    • Poster Presentation:  Ann Marie Potter, MA, OTR/L; Monica Loranger, MS, OT (’15); Carly Stull, MS, OT (’15); & Megan Tursi, MS, OT (’15)

You can get more information about the POTA conference here.

Jun 23

Safe Patient Handling – Conference coming to Etown this fall

SAVE THE DATE – November 7, 2015

standing frame with lift for patient transfer or liftingSafe Patient Handling: Maximizing Rehabilitation Outcomes for Clients & Promoting Cultural Change in Health Care Settings

  • Learn about recent federal guidelines regarding safe patient handling in a variety of health care settings.
  • Through plenary sessions & hands-on laboratory sessions, learn how to use safe patient handling procedures & equipment to ensure safety & maximize rehabilitation outcomes for clients, while minimizing your own risk for injury.
  • Develop strategies to implement cultural change in your health care setting that will promote safe patient handling.
  • Develop & participate in long-term mentoring relationships that will support your efforts to implement a safe patient handling program in your setting.

Place: Elizabethtown College, Elizabethtown PA

Cosponsors:  Elizabethtown College Dept. of Occupational Therapy  & Lebanon Valley College Dept. of Physical Therapy.

More information, including registration details, will be coming later this summer.  In the meantime, you can contact Dr. Linda Leimbach for more information.

Jun 11

The Journey to Change Begins with the First Step – Advocacy in Action

Christine Achenbach with Senator Jake Corman

Christine Achenbach, Academic Fieldwork Coordinator, with PA Senator Jake Corman.

On Tuesday, June 9, I had the privilege of attending a fundraiser on behalf of the Pennsylvania Occupational Therapy Association (POTA). Malady and Wooten, the law office that provides POTA’s lobbying efforts, hosted a reception/fundraiser for state Senate majority leader Jake Corman. I had never been to such an event and was excited to step into this opportunity to advocate for occupational therapy.

It is important for occupational therapy practitioners to be involved for the future of the profession at large and also our individual jobs. I accepted the invitation from Kerri Golden, coordinator of the POTA legislative committee.   I stepped out of my comfort zone, and like many people trying something new, I was a bit apprehensive! Kerri Golden gave me some pointers – mainly that legislators’ time is precious and I would have only a few minutes with Senator Corman. I had to be ready to provide a summary that would adequately convey what my OT and OTA colleagues wanted him to know.  Although there is no current legislation on the table that directly impacts OT, concerned consumers and providers are urging state legislators to improve how Pennsylvanians with autism might be better served as they transition from pediatric services to adulthood at age 21.

As I networked with similar constituents at the reception, it struck me that we were all there to educate Senator Corman and his staff about the issues that are important to us and the people we represent. I met a pharmacist whose role in the company where he worked very much reflected knowledge of policy and third-party reimbursement for medications. I met an administrator for a human services company who was very interested in making sure that the services his company provides to children and adults with intellectual developmental delay and autism were secured in any future state legislation.

I saw the senator working the room and realized I was “next” in line. He shook my hand confidently and warmly asked my name. I thanked him for his hard work and shared that although my name tag showed I worked at Elizabethtown College, I was there representing the 9000+ occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants in the state. I acknowledged that while his current project is focusing on streamlining state education retirement benefits, I was hopeful that when the opportunity came up to evaluate services for adults with autism in the state, he would consider keeping occupational therapy in the approved services to maximize our clients’ independence. My few minutes of face time were over and he thanked me for coming.

Over the past 14 years as fieldwork coordinator at Elizabethtown College, I have grown to discover that two important keys to affecting change are education and communication. As Senator Corman spoke to the group at the reception, he alluded to this same life lesson. When he was a freshman legislator, he was eager to get bills introduced and moved through the process so that he could help people, complete the job he was elected to do by his constituents, and fulfill his career aspirations. But as he gained experience in his role as a senator, he learned that by taking the time to work with people and communicating with them in the spirit of collaboration, they could work together to make sure the legislation had a greater chance of moving through and meeting a greater diversity of needs.

So what can each of us do?!?  Meeting personally with a legislator may not be feasible for everyone.  However, communicating with our legislators is as easy as sending an email. Do you know if your state and federal legislators even know what occupational therapy is? Or that it should be a part of home health, rehabilitation, behavioral health, forensic settings, education and so many other areas? Take a moment and search for your state legislators and your federal legislators.  Then send them an informational email sharing who you are and what you would like them to do as your voice in policy-making. If you need extra assistance or information with advocacy efforts, the American Occupational Therapy Association’s advocacy & policy pages have some wonderful tools and resources, too.  Let’s work together to make the change in the world we’d like to see and to model it for our children so the next generation can do it even better!

Apr 27

PA licensees must comply with Act 31 Child Abuse Recognition & Reporting Requirements

For all health-related professionals who practice in Pennsylvania, just a reminder that you have a new requirement for obtaining and maintaining your Occupational Therapy license in Pennsylvania.  You must complete an approved course in Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting.  **Please plan to complete the course at least 10 days before you apply for your license to allow adequate time for the course provider to report your results. Current licenses will expire on June 30th.  A list of approved courses can be found here.

New license applicants:  3-hour course

Renewal license applicants:   minimum of 2 hours