Two separate teams of health science students are in Guatemala over Spring Break this year. One team consists of nursing and pharmacy students. The other includes OT and PT students. Both team are writing about their experiences.
from Gabby LaGace & Olivia Kennedy
Today was full of adventure!! Our first stop was an orphanage named Rosa de Amor in Guatemala City. We were greeted with hugs, warm smiles and words of thanks from the staff. Here we spent the morning playing with and assessing the needs of the children. We were broken into 4 teams mixed of OT and PT students and we were able to see children ages 12 months to 16 years old all with contagious smiles and enthusiasm. Together with the staff of Rosa del Amor, we collaborated to determine appropriate exercises and activities to enhance development of the children.
Next stop was Hope for Tomorrow. This is a home for children founded by two American women who were both adoptive mothers of Guatemalan children. The team split into two groups. The first group brought many children to the local playground while the second group worked with the staff to develop a plan for a future sensory room. They also completed thorough assessments of the children with disabilities.
The PT’s worked with the staff to fit a child for orthotics to correct an abnormal gait. The OT’s also worked along side the staff to determine appropriate treatment approaches to further the children’s fine motor development and participation.
The staff of Hope for Tomorrow couldn’t have been more eager to work with us and problem solve together. Their passion for caring for the children was inspiring. What a great start to our trip and we look forward to our next stop on this journey.
With a mission to honor men and women who have made significant and lasting contributions to the health and health care industry, The Tennessee Health Care 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.
The nominations process began on February 20 and will continue until April 10 at www.tnhealthcarehall.com. Created by Belmont University and the McWhorter Society, The Hall of Fame is supported by the Nashville Health Care Council, a Hall of Fame Founding Partner. The inaugural class will be announced at the McWhorter Society’s May 5 luncheon.
In addition to recognizing Tennessee’s most influential health and health care leaders, The Hall of Fame will serve as an on-going educational resource to document the rich history that has contributed to Tennessee’s position as a leader for national health care initiatives.
At the beginning of the spring semester, first year graduate students in the College of Health Sciences & Nursing had their first experience working and learning together under the guidance of more than 25 volunteer faculty. Using a case study approach, nursing, occupational therapy and physical therapy graduate students worked together to design the best treatment plan for an elderly patient with complex health problems. The new students then tackled the “Marshmallow Challenge,” a fun and creative exercise designed to encourage teams to experience simple but profound lessons in collaboration, innovation and creativity.
College of Health Sciences & Nursing Dean Dr. Cathy Taylor said, “According to the World Health Organization (2010), ‘interprofessional education (IPE) occurs when two or more professions learn about, from and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes.’ Emerging evidence links interprofessional (IP) teams to better patient outcomes. As we move into the next phase of healthcare reform, licensed professionals must be able to work effectively in teams and communicate vital patient information clearly.”
Three students preparing to be occupational therapy assistants at Nashville State Community College join the first year class of doctoral students in Belmont’s Occupational Therapy program.
First 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, Ashley Collins, Amber Sevier-Hunt and Chelsey Morton, 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.
As part of the new student orientation this week, the School of Occupational Therapy had 57 students and faculty members involved in an afternoon of service at six different locations around the Nashville area. Service opportunities included shopping for refugee families with World Relief, sorting and organizing equipment for the Tennessee Disability Coalition, packaging newborn kits and prenatal vitamins at LiveBeyond, doing landscaping at Homeplace, making cards for Meals on Wheels through Fifty Forward and interacting with residents at Morningside Assisted Living Facility. Through these service experiences, they got to know each other while learning about organizations around the Belmont community and being introduced to service, which is a key value of the University and a central theme in the occupational therapy curriculum design.
Dr. Teresa Plummer, Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy, was a presenter this spring at the Interdisciplinary Seating and Mobility Conference in Nottwil, Switzerland. The conference was held at the Switzerland Paraplegic Center, a 150 bed facility dedicated to spinal cord injury rehab and research. Dr. Plummer’s presentation was on the Relationship of Vision, Posture and Mobility.
Photo courtesy of WSMV
The Inman Health Sciences Building became a workshop and playground on Thursday as part of an international project to promote pediatric mobility. University of Delaware physical therapy professor Cole Galloway and his Pediatric Mobility Lab and Design Studio bought to Belmont Go Baby Go, a program that teaches adults how to modify existing toy cars in a few hours to make them functional for children with disabilities.
Eight families and their therapists from Tennessee, Kentucky and Georgia worked alongside Belmont occupational therapy and physical therapy students and alumni to learn how to modify toys and the logistics of the Go Baby Go program. Together, they altered Fisher Price Lightning McQueen red cars with Velcro, PVC pipes, pool noodles and kickboards to create wheelchair-like toys. The cars also function as physical therapy devices to teach strength and balance while allowing the disabled children to socialize with other children their age. Through constraint-induced therapy, the children are motivated to use their weaker muscles to gain independence and operate the toys, which by nature are fun. Buttons were moved so that the toy car moves only when a girl with cerebral palsy holds her head up or a boy with a spinal cord injury stands.
Two occupational therapy doctoral students from Belmont University, Evan Pendygraft and Jevorius Price, began work this semester to provide ergonomic consultation to Spring Back Mattress Recycling in Nashville. The local non-profit was started in 2010 as a project by a Belmont University Enactus (then Students in Free Enterprise) team who explored mattress recycling as a means of achieving a triple bottom line, serving people, planet, and profit. Pendygraft and Price are working under the guidance of Dr. Teresa Plummer and Dr. Debra Gibbs, faculty members in the School of Occupational Therapy, and with Dr. John Gonas from the College of Business Administration, to assist workers at Spring Back to lessen the physical strain in their work activities and avoid potential injury. The consultation will continue during the next year.
First inductees to be announced at McWhorter Society Luncheon May 1
With a mission to honor men and women who have made significant and lasting contributions to the healthcare industry, Belmont University announced today the formation of a new Tennessee Healthcare Hall of Fame. Sponsored by Belmont’s McWhorter Society, the Healthcare Hall of Fame will announce its first inductees at the McWhorter Society Annual Luncheon on May 1 on Belmont’s campus.
Belmont Provost Dr. Thomas Burns, co-chair of the McWhorter Society, said, “Tennessee has become a premier hub for healthcare and healthcare education in the United States. It’s only appropriate that we recognize and honor the countless men and women who have contributed to the growth of the industry, creating ever higher standards for patient care and well-being. With Belmont’s strong interdisciplinary programming in nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, social work, healthcare business and pharmacy, we’re proud to host this new Tennessee Healthcare Hall of Fame as these leaders can inspire our students for generations to come.”
Over 70 physical and occupational therapists attended a continuing education course, An Evidence Based Approach to Standing and Walking for Children with Moderate to Severe Motor Dysfunction, at Belmont University on Saturday, February 22. This course was sponsored by Belmont University Schools of Physical and Occupational Therapy along with Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. The course was taught by Ginny Paleg, a nationally-recognized expert in pediatric standing and mobility, and was underwritten by Prime Engineering. Course participants learned how to select and fit appropriate standing and walking assistive devices for children with special needs.