Occupational and Physical Therapy Students Participate in Aquifit Program

Associate Professor in the School of Occupational Therapy Natalie Michaels started the Aquifit program seven years ago with students from Tennessee State University. The program provides aquatic exercise for older adults and promotes wellness, socialization and enjoyment. The program has demonstrated improved balance, weight loss and decreased pain in individuals with arthritis as the buoyancy in chest deep water provides assistive movement to antigravity muscles, as well as resistance to muscles that are gravity assisted on land.

Aquifit 3Michaels is now including Belmont’s occupational and physical therapy students in the program. Students recently participated in the program at Del Webb Retirement Community and will do so again in April. The program is currently targeted to the older adult population, but the group plans to work with young adults with neuromuscular disabilities in the Metro Parks system next month and to eventually work with children with Down Syndrome.

Michaels said the community was impressed with the professionalism and intelligence of the Belmont students. “It’s been wonderful including students from two different disciplines in the activity. Having students from more than one perspective has made it a much more holistic experience both for the students and the participants,” she said. “There have also been community therapists from multiple disciplines assisting and a few faculty from other universities. I am extremely proud to work on this service activity with the OT and PT students from Belmont.”

Aquifit at Del WebbStudents who participated included occupational therapy students Alyssa Burlage, Amanda LaBonte, Jordyn Perry, Joseph Straatman, Jenae Stevens and Nicole Kmieciek and physical therapy students Brittany Ryan, Emmy Rice, Kelsey Marie Otten, Lindsey Schiller, Megan Rolfe and Shelly Witt.

Doctoral Health Science students honored for Thesis Abstracts

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Evan Pendygraft and Samantha Grishaber represent their research colleagues at the Graduate Education Day on The Hill.

Graduate students from two programs in Belmont University’s Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences & Nursing were recently honored by the Tennessee Conference of Graduate Schools with the 2015-16 Outstanding Thesis Award.

Six students in the Occupational Therapy Doctoral program were recognized for their abstract entitled, “Prevalent Concerns Among Community-Dwelling Older Adults in Middle Tennessee.”  The students, Samantha Grishaber, Abby Hawkins, Evan Pendygraft, Chelsea Skaggs, Mary Beth Thiel and Nicole Wright, were mentored by Dr. Debra Gibbs, Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy.  The study identified health as the primary concern of community-dwelling adults that contribute to their ability to sustain independent living, followed by finances, memory, transportation and safety.

Kathryn D. Mitchell, a student in Belmont’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program, was also recognized for her study entitled, “Public Access to Naloxone: Provider Awareness and Prescribing Attitudes.”  Her project examined knowledge, attitudes, subjective norms, and prescribing intentions among nurse practitioners (NPs) working in adult primary care, family practice, pain management, and emergency department practice settings in response to state naloxone distribution laws.  Her study revealed that NPs are critical to successful implementation of this innovative approach to combat overdose deaths in Tennessee.

The abstracts were presented at the Graduate Education Day on the Hill for the Tennessee Legislature earlier this week.

Colleges of Health Sciences and Pharmacy to host Health Academy in June for 5th-8th graders

HealthAcademyThe College of Health Sciences and the College of Pharmacy will host a week-long day camp from June 6 through June 10 that will allow students in grades 5 through 8 to explore the different careers available in the health sciences fields and expose them to issues healthcare professionals deal with on a daily basis. Students will explore a real-world example of how different health professionals (pharmacy, physical therapy, nursing, occupational therapy, social work) collaborate and work inter-professionally to take care of a patient.  Click here to register.

Occupational Therapy Doctoral Program Earns Reaccreditation for 10 Years

Belmont’s Entry Level Doctorate Program in Occupational Therapy was recently granted a 10-year reaccreditation term from the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE). ACOTE awards an accreditation period of 5, 7, or 10 years with 7 years as the “standard number of years for reaccreditation” and 10 years granted to programs with “demonstrated exceptional educational quality and no areas of noncompliance.”

ACOTE’s primary purposes are quality assurance and program improvement/enhancement. To fulfill these purposes, ACOTE requires programs to engage in a self-study and submit an evaluative report. Although program evaluation is ongoing, the formal self-study process was initiated more than a year ago under the direction of Lorry Liotta-Kleinfeld, EdD, OTR/L, program chair, Yvette Hachtel, JD, OTR/L, self-study chair, and Debra Gibbs, interim OTD program director in conjunction with the Curriculum Committee and occupational therapy faculty, administration, students, graduates, fieldwork educators, staff and stakeholders. The self-study required faculty to participate in intensive reviews to assure compliance with ACOTE standards.

Prior to the onsite visit, current OTD Program Director Dr. Sabrina Salvant led a series of preparatory discussions in collaboration with faculty, students and stakeholders to further examine adherence to ACOTE standards. The on-site evaluation occurred from Nov. 9-11 and included interviews with senior leadership, administration, faculty, students, employers, fieldwork educators and graduates.

OTD students welcome OTA students from Nashville State

NSCC2015OTAFirst year doctoral students in Belmont’s Occupational Therapy program recently hosted students and faculty from the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) program at Nashville State Community College (NSCC) as part of their preparation for upcoming fieldwork experiences.

Ms. Donna Whitehouse, Associate Professor and Director of NSCC’s OTA program, was joined by OTA students, Chloe Morton, Emily Rivers, Joy Whitley, Donna Whitehouse, Casey Miller and Marcus Maclin in sharing information about the OTA curriculum, the roles and responsibilities of an occupational therapy assistant, and supervision guidelines.

The purpose of the class was to familiarize the students with how  occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants collaborate to deliver occupational therapy services.

Belmont Health Science Students attend Global Missions Conference

Shelby Blalock, a doctoral student in pharmacy, adds a marker for Guatemala on a world map at the conference which represented mission trips of participants. Shelby’s interest in missions was reinforced during a Belmont Health Science mission trip to the country earlier this year.

Shelby Blalock, a doctoral student in pharmacy, adds a marker for Guatemala on a world map at the conference which represented mission trips of participants. Shelby’s interest in missions was reinforced during a Belmont Health Science mission trip to the country earlier this year.

Students and faculty from Belmont University’s health science programs recently attended the 2015 Global Missions Health Conference in Louisville, Kentucky.  Over 3000 health professionals and health professions students gathered for the world’s largest such gathering for medical missions.

Dr. Ruby Dunlap, Professor of Nursing, and Dr. Tracy Frame, Assistant Professor of Pharmacy, coordinated participation of 16 students from Belmont’s programs in nursing, occupational therapy, pharmacy and physical therapy.  Student involvement was spearheaded by Derek Neice, a senior nursing major, and facilitated by a gift from the Gabhart Fund to help pay registration fees. Continue reading

Tennessee Health Care Hall of Fame Inducts Inaugural Members

The Tennessee Health Care Hall of Fame inducted its inaugural eight member class at a luncheon and ceremony in Belmont’s Curb Event Center on Monday, October 12. Hosted by Senior Policy Adviser at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Susan Dentzer, the Hall of Fame seeks to recognize and honor the pioneers and current leaders who have formed Tennessee’s health and health care community and encourage future generations of health care professionals. Continue reading

Tennessee Health Care Hall of Fame Announces Inaugural Induction Ceremony

Healthcare-Hall-of-Fame-1171The Tennessee Health Care Hall of Fame has announced its inaugural induction ceremony and luncheon, scheduled for Monday, October 12 at 11:30 a.m. in Belmont University’s Curb Event Center.

With a mission to honor men and women who have made significant and lasting contributions to the health and health care industry, the Hall of Fame seeks to recognize and honor the pioneers and current leaders that have formed Tennessee’s health and health care community and encourage future generations of health care professionals.

Created by Belmont University and Belmont’s McWhorter Society with the support of the Nashville Health Care Council, a Founding Partner, the Hall of Fame announced its eight inaugural inductees at an event in May. These individuals include: Continue reading

Occupational Therapy Orientation Includes Community Service

OTD-2Students and faculty from Belmont’s School of Occupational Therapy participated in an afternoon of service at seven Nashville locations on Monday, August 24, as part of new student orientation.

The team of 56 students and faculty members completed a number of projects including delivering household items for refugee families with World Relief, sorting and organizing equipment for children with special needs living overseas with Show Hope and my LIFE speaks, packaging new parent materials for the Down Syndrome Association of Middle Tennessee, completing landscaping at Homeplace, making graduation photo collages for New Beginnings and interacting with clients at Fifty Forward’s adult daycare services.

Through these experiences, incoming students were introduced to organizations around the Belmont community as they were actively involved in service, a key value of the University and a central theme in the Occupational Therapy Doctorate curriculum design.

Belmont OTD graduate featured in “Today in OT” for program she developed as a student

AmandaAquatics1Dr. Amanda Hassen, a 2015 graduate of Belmont University School of Occupational Therapy, was featured in a recent article in Today in OT for her work in teaching swimming skills to children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).    The effort was part of Hassen’s experiential component as a third-year doctoral student in occupational therapy at Belmont that integrated curricular themes of clinical excellence, scholarship, service and leadership. Continue reading