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Showing posts from July, 2012

Who has responsibility for your occupational therapist???

Corporate practice and the health care professions in New York State might not be on the top of everyone's interest list but there are some things that professionals and the public need to be aware of. 

In New York State and in many other states for that matter there are restrictions on who can hire professionals to provide services.  These kinds of laws prohibit any random person from starting a corporation and hiring OTs or PTs or any professional and billing for those services.  The reason why those laws exist are because people think that there is potential for abuse/fraud/unethical choices when professionals are not 'owned' and 'supervised' by people within their own professions.

Now of course just because an OT hires and OT or a PT hires a PT that does not guarantee that unethical things won't happen.  Still, there is generic concern so these laws were enacted to prevent abuse.  So, in order for PTs and OTs to both be hired by a corporation there needs t…

Bidirectional bias as ABA and SI proponents fight in the public square

More for the file 'whose kung fu intervention for autism is strongest.'

Lang, et.al. (2012) published a systematic review of sensory integration therapy for autism spectrum disorders that at the same time has academically dishonest and potentially useful information.

The review errs in its rather lopsided inclusion of articles that measure the effects of isolated intervention strategies that would probably best be identified as addressing components of sensory processing as opposed to measuring a sensory integration methodology.  This is nothing new; there have been some good articles in the American Journal of Occupational Therapy recently that have contributed to debunking the use of seat cushions to promote attending behaviors and debunking the use of weighted vests to promote attending behaviors.  These findings are yet to filter into practice because a lot of people really like the idea of quick and easy answers to complex problems.  Finally we are getting to a point wit…

Take care

There was an interesting conversation on the AOTA forums recently about whether or not a COTA should be 'bathing' patients in a nursing home.

Some of the conversation centered around the 'skill set' of the COTA and whether or not the COTA was being used in a nursing assistant type of role.  Then there was discussion about whether or not this was appropriate, and some people thought it might be appropriate as long as it wasn't being billed out as direct occupational therapy (unless there was some therapeutic self care training aspect to the task).

Most of these points were valid - but as is typical in online forum posts there is a real lack of detailed information so it is almost always near impossible to know if any answer provided is really the best answer for what is being 'asked.'

Something else jumped out at me though while I was reading the conversation.  Someone said,

I say not bathe the patients because that is not what they went to school to do wit…

More road paving for paraprofessional EI services in New York State

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What motivates a memo from your government?

Today I was sent a memo from OPWDD that addresses the issue of interagency coordination between the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) and the Early Intervention Program in NY State.  Why are they motivated to better coordinate services between governmental agencies?  Simple answer, if you read the news.


Costs for special education services are soaring in New York, as documented in this NY Times article.  Quasi-privatization comes at some cost, which really can't be denied.  If you want to get depressed go and read some audits from the State Comptroller's office.  If you are less motivated to read these audits then just watch the news and you will see several articles like this every year.  In sum, there are bad eggs out there who are gaming the special education system at taxpayer expense.

The problem with the Times article AND the problem with the resulting memo from OPWDD is that it assumes that privatizatio…

Things that happen at 2am

It was very early in the morning - so early that it was actually still nighttime.  Of course this is not an appropriate time for any rational person with a daytime schedule to be awake, but I couldn't sleep so it seemed that the most sensible thing to do would be to go food shopping.  Don't ask.

Anyway, as I strolled up and down the aisles I was lost in thought regarding how decisions were made for product placement on shelves and whether or not the items I would be interested in would be at my eye level.  In my dreamy 2am somnambulatory state I felt an unexpected tap on my shoulder that caused me to whirl around suddenly to see who was interested in getting my attention.

"Good evening, sir!" said the unfamiliar face of a 30 something year old young man.  The voice was not familiar either.  Then I squinted and tilted my head just enough to catapult me back to 1992 when I knew Aaron.  Amazingly, the haircut was the same and was the predominant feature that sparked my …