Can you believe August has already come and gone? A few more months and we’ll be welcoming the holidays already! It has been a massive month here at Williams OT with so many exciting things happening. Check it all out below and make sure you read through and check out the innovative service delivery award. Get your nominations in.
August Featured Blog Post
Brain injury awareness week was on between August 20-26th. Brain injury awareness week is all about raising awareness about the causes, symptoms and the impacts of brain injury. To mark the week we wrote a blog post about how brain injury impacts on driving. We have found a bunch of useful links for you to go and visit (and come back of course because you think we are awesome) and hear first-hand what the impact of brain injuries have on driving, but more importantly how OT’s are working with drivers to bet them back behind the wheel. Read through to the end and we will help you understand how a referral to an OT might just be the best thing you ever did for you and your family. Click here read more.
August Featured Vehicle Modification
Multiple compressed vertebrae and bulging discs have resulted in complex nerve damage for this driver.
Foot drop was a major safety concern, however, a foot up for the right reduces spasms. A spinner knob to increase steering accuracy and safety and a memory foam cushion to increase comfort and reduce back pain were all recommended to increase driver function and safety.
Featured Video for August: What do you do if you don’t have enough grip for a steering wheel?
Meet Michelle Mart
If you refer to Williams OT, there is a good chance you will meet Michelle. Michelle is one of our driver trained OTs completing assessments and rehab plans for many of our clients. At Williams OT we only hire OT’s that meet our core values and can buy into our vision. Michelle has that in spades.
Driving has been a part of my life since the earliest memories of riding on my Dad’s lap in his ole 1949 Light Fifteen Citroen. He’d be operating the foot pedals and I’d be steering through the dirt roads down to Waitpinga Beach for a night of salmon surf fishing. I guess that set me up for a somewhat eccentric taste for classic cars, 4 wheels driving and heading out bush bashing from an early age.
Driving to me has never been just a necessity to get from A to B for life’s demands, but it held more scope as a skill. I probably have my father to blame for that one as well as he taught me to drive in the smallest, weirdest car (an NSU Prinz) and the biggest car we had (an F100 tray top ute.) I can still remember the bench seat in the F100 sliding across the cabin as we drove through a sweeping bend on a country road.
The joy I developed from gaining my licence has fuelled a passion for 4 wheel driving and I have had many a fun time pounding over the Simpson Desert, through arid dry plains and torrential mud forming storms. But I especially love the slow 4 wheel crawl through our state’s amazing gorges in the Gammon and Flinders Ranges. Driving has taken me to places I never would have had a chance to experience and it only makes sense that I wound up helping others to gain their licences or return to driving following a medical episode.
I get a superkick out of sharing a moment of self-accomplishment that occurs when a person regains their licence using an alternative method such as hand controls, or a young teenager with a disability gains their probationary license for the first time. I understand that feeling, as I remember the day I passed my licence test and the possibilities of life that opened up before my eyes. I still get this feeling every time I go out 4 wheel driving and succeed after a few tries to get over that big dune in the desert or get safely through a narrow gorge.
When I studied Occupational Therapy as a mature age student, I never thought I could marry these 2 passions together as a career, but here I am with Williams OT and loving assisting people to achieve their own goals of driving.
Earlier this month we were lucky enough to be contacted by Today Tonight reporter Callum MacPherson who wanted to do a feature story on one of our clients, Nick. It really is a great story to show what can be done and how life can be improved with driving when others have given up hope. You can check out the story by clicking the photo on the right, or click this link.
Please share the story to inspire others who thought they might not ever drive.
OT Awards is coming up soon!
Do you know someone that is innovative as an Occupational Therapist? If so, please like and share to all fellow OTs in SA.
Let’s recognise those who work hard to make our profession better.
Williams OT won this award several years ago and now sponsor the award because we believe in innovative practice so much. As a profession, we have to innovate and evolve.
What have you or someone else done? Like and share to spread the word and if you know someone to nominate, click here to fill up the form and get your entries in before September 30th
Total Ability High Level Assessment Vehicle
Coming to Adelaide this October
The Total Ability assessment van offers drive from wheelchair testing with controls such as a remote mini steering wheel, fully electronic power-assisted accelerator and brake and voice-controlled secondary controls such as indicators and wipers and lights. The van also has full joystick controls being installed for one-handed operation and might be available for the upcoming visit. Such controls are excellent for clients with no leg function with weak upper limb control but still have a desire to drive and be independent. The van also has the option of foot steering with a client has bilateral upper limb issues.
The van will be coming in this October 15-26th, so if you want to test in the modifications offered, which are pretty similar to what Nick is using in our feature story above, then feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the van, click here to download the brochure.
Some interesting articles for you
- Drive On! Preserve and Prolong Your Time on the Road https://books.google.com.au/books?hl=en&lr=lang_en&id=j61mDwAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PP1&dq=Occupational+Therapy+driving&ots=XZrwTSfeSj&sig=EzSRCt7OxlsWMC8Y-hm2ztg3lWk#v=onepage&q&f=false
- Spine Injuries: Conservative Managment, Operative Management and Return to Sport https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-16223-2_13
- Evaluation of driving skills after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction with hamstring autografthttps://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0968016018305994
- A psycho-Geoinformatics approach for investigating older adults’ driving behaviours and underlying cognitive mechanismshttps://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s12544-018-0308-6
- Boots Are Not Made for Driving: A Cautionary Case Report About the Dangers of Driving in a CAM Walker Boot and Literature Reviewhttps://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1938640018790057
- Brake response time after modern total knee arthroplasty: How soon can patients drive? https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0968016018305192
- Effects of Music on the Driving Performance of Young Drivers With and Without Autism Spectrum Disorderhttps://thescholarship.ecu.edu/handle/10342/6953
- Patient Safety https://www.orthopedic.theclinics.com/article/S0030-5898(18)30089-0/fulltext