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Measuring Florida Occupational Therapists’ Interest and Feasibility in Providing Therapy Services to Majority World Nations

Measuring Florida Occupational Therapists’ Interest and Feasibility in Providing Therapy Services to Majority World Nations

“The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world’s problems” -Mahatma Ghandi

By: Rachel Cromwell and Sharon Hope Winters Students at Advent Health University
Correspond to: Sharon Winters, [email protected]

 

The world has become a global society with the ability to achieve an interconnected community. The problem is the world has a global view without global support. Resources are available yet avenues to bring resources abroad in a safe, effective way are scarce. Third world nations, also known as majority world nations or developing world nations, have deficits in care, education, and equipment. Occupational rights are such an integral part of American and European society that the Office of Public Sector Information and the United States Department of Justice have put laws in place for people with disabilities guaranteeing equal access to education, employment, and public buildings and activities. Developed nations have funding that support large amounts of rehabilitation research, development of technology that support mobility, cognition, and sensory while health as a right is very difficult for marginalized populations. Inequitable distribution of health opportunities globally is a major factor in health deficits. It is a joint responsibility of both domestic and external governments to fulfill health rights of majority world citizens (Barugahare & Lie, 2016; Reynolds, 2010). There is a lack of awareness of this need, lack of therapists available to provide services, and lack of safe, economical methods to bring relief to these countries.

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FOTA... Who We Are

FOTA...

Who We Are

The Florida Occupational Therapy Association (FOTA) is an all volunteer organization with the exception of one paid employee. That one employee, which many of you who have contacted the organization already know, is named Janine. She is fantastic at what she does for the organization, handling many of the day to day tasks that administratively need to be addressed. FOTA proudly represents the interest of over 16,000+ occupational therapy practitioners (occupational therapists, occupational therapy assistants, and students). Currently, membership in our organization is approximately 1,000 total members, with half of those members being students (our future practitioners). Of the 500 approximate practitioners, we have 50 or so practitioners who are tasked with running the organization and the scope of its reach. So, you might ask, why all the honesty? Because FOTA believes in transparency and we feel it is important you know who we are and what we do. We also need to be honest in expressing how necessary you are to that definition, as we are all simultaneously co-evolving.

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COVID-19 Update and Resources


 COVID-19 Update and Resources


March 22, 2020 

FOTA recognizes the impact of Covid-19 (coronavirus) on individuals, families, the nation, and our world as we all adapt to these uncertain times. OT Practitioners across the state of Florida have all been challenged to remain healthy and ensure safe practices to prevent further community spread. As many of you have worked in various sectors or continue to be on the front lines, the influx of executive orders at the local, state, and national level can cause confusion as to what steps to take next. Of the utmost importance is to ensure your safety and that of your family, while following orders to reduce and prevent community spread.


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Trauma and TraumaInformed (TI) Approaches to Care: Applications to Occupational Therapy Practice

Trauma and Trauma Informed (TI) Approaches to Care: Applications to Occupational Therapy Practice

Trauma is widespread and has profound effects that can lead to emotional and physical distress throughout the lifespan. Statistics from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on abuse and violence in the United States indicate the following:

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Musings on Oxytocin in Things We Do and Those We Care about Abstract

Musings on Oxytocin in Things We Do and Those We Care about

Abstract

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The Role of Occupational Therapy In Cancer Care

The Role of Occupational Therapy In Cancer Care

Cancer is a multifaceted disease that affects quality of life and occupation performance of millions of individuals across the nation. It is estimated, in the United States, 15.5 million individuals live with a history of cancer (Taylor, 2018; National Cancer Institute, 2018). The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2014), estimates that one in two men and one in three women before the age of 85 will be diagnosed with some form of cancer. Advances in medicine for cancer management and treatment for various forms of cancer, has significantly increased the survival rates of cancer patients. Occupational therapists (OTs), have the skills, knowledge, and education to provide interventions to cancers survivors to improve quality of life (QOL) and occupational performance.

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Wellness & Health Promotion is Center Stage

Wellness & Health Promotion is Center Stage

Wellness and health promotion efforts appear to be at center stage, as the society becomes more aware about the burden of chronic diseases over the lifespan. This knowledge fosters the understanding that lifestyle choices can have a significant impact on prevalence of chronic diseases (Snelling, 2014). The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) has identified Health and Wellness as a key practice area in the 21st century (AOTA, 2015). According to AOTA, “factors that will drive an increasing need for wellness-related services are based on an accumulating body of scientific evidence that an individual’s health is directly related to physical as well as emotional well-being” (AOTA, 2015) . To support practice, AOTA provides extensive resources for Health and Wellness practice embedded within occupational therapy, including evidence-based literature, technology applications to support domains of health, and professional development opportunities.

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Poised For Success

Poised for Success

(First in a series of articles describing FOTA’s Leadership Development Program)
 By Susan Hermes, OTD, BCP, OTR/L and Elena Vizvary, MS, OTR/L

 
FOTA has a long history of being a leader in occupational therapy state associations and innovations as one of the early established state associations and licensure. The Leadership Development Initiative emerged from passionate members approaching elected leadership of Florida Occupational Therapy Association (FOTA). These members had been involved with American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) Emerging Leaders and Emerging Managers programs with positive professional outcomes. The question was raised if something similar would be a match for the membership needs and the FOTA strategic plan. A small committee was formed to determine if mentoring or leadership was the direction that would fit the current members needs, marketing, and leadership efforts. Compromise and constant collaboration to make sure sequential steps were followed to gather information and align with evidence based content to guide the successive years.

2016 OT/OTA Student Survey


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Congratulations to our 36 New Leadership Program Participants, June 8th, 2019

Congratulations to our 36 New Leadership Program Participants, June 8th, 2019 

Leadership Development Program Event

 

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Hill Day 2019

FOTA Hill Day in Tallahassee, FL,  January 22 at the Capitol Building, 2nd Floor Rotunda at 8am. We were joined by our lobbying firm, Corcoran & Johnston (C&J), to establish a presence with legislators in the rotunda, promote an awareness OT on the hill, as well as engage in sit-down meetings individually with specifically selected legislators at their offices as arranged C&J. Our objective was to raise awareness of the distinct value of OT in serving Floridians, and addressing specific issues of access to care, protection and promotion of OT practice across our state. We hope many OTs join us for Hill Day in the years to come. Part of your membership dues go to ensure that FOTA as skilled advisement from our lobbying firm on strategies to promote and protect OT in Florida.  FOTA relies on membership support to advocate successfully. More members are needed to increase our ability to influence change.
Thanks to OT Students from FAMU and OTA Students from Keiser U provided a positive presence and enthusiastic representation for the future of Occupational Therapy in Florida. Students and faculty attended some meeting with legislators, toured the House and Senate Chambers, and mingled with the leaders coming and going in the Rotunda. A student poster presenting research on the important issue pain management through OT was presented near our FOTA tables. Informational Brochures were available for all passers by.
 

The FOTA Governmental Affairs Co-Chairs, President, our Lobby Firm--Corcoran & Johnston, and Members had 16 different legislators and their staff over the course of a full-day schedule. We discussed issues important to the practice of OT and the service to our clients over several talking points including the Opioid Crisis, Pain Management, Mental Health in Schools, Medicaid, and Telehealth Practice. Our meeting included leaders on important health policy, and human services committees. We thank them for a receptive discussion about OT in FL. I have included some pics of my hand-held schedule and talking points from the day of meetings.

Hill Day Schedule  of Legislator Office Visits PDF

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child mental health awareness day

Celebrating National Children's Mental Health Day: May 10th, 2018

 Join the FOTA leadership and membership in acknowledging National Children's Mental Health Day, May 10th, 2018. In service of our FOTA vision to be the respected authority on occupational therapy’s contribution to health and well-being in Florida, we have assembled a humble offering of clinician's resources and supportive information for OTs from across the state to use in service to children's mental health. Our Ad Hoc Committee on School Mental Health is developing further programming to offer to our members in the future, and we are developing policy statements to share with our advocacy team and our Florida legislators. 

FOTA believes in the potential for OT practitioners to impact child well being and provide new and innovative programs to meet the needs of our students in schools across Florida. We believe in the preventative model, nurturing social and emotional learning, and skills for emotional regulation, social skills, and collaborative learning -- all through occupation-based activities. Please take time today, and everyday to nurture the wellness of children in your life and in your practice. See our resources below --an assemblage that is still a work in development.  Take Care!

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President's Blog: March Musings

From The President: Spring FOCUS 2018

Hello FOTA Members! And welcome visitors to the blog, we hope you join us in FOTA, as an OT You Belong!

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Happy 2018

Happy 2018! As we say goodbye to 2017, we can all take account of the highlights, rewards, and challenges of the past year and move forward looking to improve. At FOTA, our commitment is to support you as a member in practice, education, and advocacy in this new year. The FOTA board is working together on developing future leaders in our organization through our Ad Hoc committee on Leadership Development. After last fall’s success with our OTA Leadership course, we plan to offer a continuing education course to select future leaders this spring. Our commitment is to foster and support leadership in FOTA for our success in the future. Your opportunity to be involved includes volunteering for an event, project, or committee, and serving on the FOTA board. The FOTA Elections 2018 will take place in March, where nominations for President-elect and Secretary will open on the website January 22nd.

 

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