We are going to start by talking about the actual evaluation including what we need to think about when performing an evaluation and what needs to go into the actual evaluation itself. We are then going to talk a little about taking measurements within the actual evaluation. We will talk a little bit about troubleshooting for when we actually take the measurements, what we need to look for and what we need to think about. If you are doing an wheelchair evaluation and building a wheelchair from the ground up, then this will be a good overall view of how to do that. Sometimes the situation is the therapists are in a setting where they are not doing the wheelchair evaluation from the ground up, but are the ones doing the troubleshooting. For example, nursing may bring a client in to you while you are in the clinic or in the office, and say, “You know, so and so looks really bad in the chair today. How can we make them look a little bit better?” If this is the situation that you are in, when we talk about measurements today, this will also help you a great deal with troubleshooting as well. If you are not doing the actual evaluation itself, but you are doing more of the troubleshooting end of it, this will help cover those bases as well. We will also talk about letters of medical necessity and what needs to go into them. There are several key phrases now that a lot of our funding sources are looking for in order to receive approval on some of the equipment options that are out there, and we will talk about that as well.
I have added some extra handouts to this course which will be of interest when we talk about seating in both today’s course and tomorrow’s course, which is where we actually talk a little bit more about the intricacies of the cushions and the equipment.
If you are interested in any of RESNA’s certifications, there are a couple of certifications that we should probably touch on before we go too terribly far into this. There are a couple of certifications by RESNA. RESNA is the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America. If you are a therapist, a PT, PTA, COTA or OTR, you can sit for an additional certification which you may get on top of your licensure. There are two of them now, one of which is the ATP, which is the Assistive Technology Professional certification, and the other one is called the SMS, which is the Seating and Mobility Specialist examination. Either one or both of these can greatly contribute to your marketing capability and to your knowledge base while you are in clinic trying to troubleshoot some wheelchair issues and seating issues with a lot of your clients. As we go through today, you will hear me say, “ATP people, if you are interested in this, write this down. This will be on there.” Or “If you are interested in the SMS, write this down. This may be on there as well.”
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