Pediatric and Adult Specialty ServicesOccupational therapy services at the institute require a referral from a primary care physician that includes a clear statement of the referral concern. Therapy can occur in the clinic or in the home, depending on the stated needs of the individual at the time of referral.
The initial evaluation will focus on the referral concern and will include one or more of the following:
- The individual and family members will be asked to share perspectives about specific activities and tasks that are challenging within the context of daily routines and life roles.
- The therapist will assess small or fine motor skills by observing the individual’s manipulation of various objects, tools and dressing fasteners, thereby assessing the building blocks of these skills: muscle strength, joint stability and eye-hand coordination. Formal, standardized test instruments will be used to provide qualification data when needed and/or requested.
- Food/drink may be used to assess concerns about oral-motor or self-feeding skill development.
- Specific measures of handwriting legibility will be used when this is a referral concern.
- Life skills evaluated for those wanting to live with complete or improved independence within their current or future living environment.
- Mobility and Assistive Technology (MAT Clinic) evaluations will focus on determining the appropriate mobility device and/or positioning, postural and access concerns that prompted the referral.
The evaluation summary will include recommendations for therapy and a treatment plan that typically requires authorization by the individual’s medical insurance provider. Therapy sessions will include skill-building activities that are creative, functional, engaging and can be incorporated into a home program. The individual receiving therapy and their caregivers play an active role in the therapy process.
Short-term, intensive, small group or individual treatment opportunities are available during the summer months for children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy, or handwriting difficulties. The following services are available to qualifying individuals on a limited basis:
- Clinic-based handwriting remediation sessions are offered on a limited basis during the summer months as self-pay or fee for service. Using the Learning without Tears© materials and instructional strategies, elementary-age students can receive focused handwriting instruction in either individual or small group 45-minute sessions. Children in grades 1 through 4 and who know the alphabet are eligible. The application/intake form will determine if the child would do best in individual or small-group sessions, as children are grouped/paired based on similar level of writing skills.
- HABIT CAMP, or Hand Arm Bimanual Intensive Therapy, is offered in a camp like environment. HABIT is an intervention strategy focused on children with hemiplegia as a way to improve their bimanual coordination of their arms/legs. A virtual piece was in the summer of 2021. For information regarding VR HABIT camp registration, email James Gehringer, PhD.