Who are we?
• Licensed and certified occupational therapy assistants
• Licensed and registered occupational therapists
• Licensed in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire
• Create OT/OTA teams
• Understanding of school based model
• Professional and competent
We provide occupational therapy evaluations and treatment to students with special needs including:
• motor impairment
• developmental delays
• perceptual-motor difficulties
• sensory processing disorders
• feeding problems
• problems of task mastery
• poor organization of school skills
• attention or behavior deficits
• need for special equipment and/or techniques to accomplish
What are school-based occupational therapy services?
School-based occupational therapy services are not about remediation, but are about one's ability to engage in education and access the curriculum. If it is determined that a child's development in the areas of occupational performance is delayed or atypical in some way that negatively affects his/her ability to function in a school environment and that area is within the scope of practice for occupational therapy, then occupational therapy intervention is recommended. It is important to note that the delivery of occupational therapy services is dependent on the impact of deficits on educational performance. Recommendations are individually based on the student’s needs. Service delivery is not meant to be long term, but provided in such a way for the student to meet his/her educational goals in the least restrictive environment (LRE) in order to access the curriculum.
Karen Braganca, COTA/L, receives 2013 MAOT Outstanding Practitioner for Clinical Excellence, MAOT Annual Conference, Norwood, Massachusetts, November 2013
(left to right, Sheri Purdy, Nominations Chair, MAOT, Michelle Savrann, President, MAOT, Karen Hefler, Rehabilitation Therapy Associates, Karen Braganca, Rehabilitation Therapy Associates)
What else do we do?
• This business was started to be a resource for schools and occupational therapy practitioners.
• Independent evaluations-An independent occupational therapy evaluation is done right at the student's school, not in a clinic! The student is first observed "incognito" in his or her natural classroom setting to get a sense of the child in the educational environment. Individual testing is then done at the school using standardized evaluation tools appropriate for the student's chronological age and suspected area of educational disability. The evaluation rate includes teacher consultation, a written report, and attendance at the Team Meeting.
• Long term coverage-We can provide temporary coverage for extended medical leaves, maternity leaves, and other leaves of absence.
• Extended Year Programs (EYP)-We can provide coverage for your occupational therapy needs in extended year programming.
• Inservice training-We can provide half day and full day trainings for your staff. Possible topics include sensory processing disorders, fine motor development and handwriting, visual-perceptual-motor skills and their relationship to reading, writing, and math skills, and inclusionary programs and flexible groupings.
• Program Evaluation-We can provide program evaluation as part of the DESE requirements.
• Program Development-We will work with school systems to develop classrooms and programs to meet students' needs.
• Fieldwork Education-We are partnered with North Shore Community College, Quinisigamond Community College, Salem State University, and the University of New Hampshire to provide clinical fieldwork education for occupational therapy students.
Testimonial: "As the Academic Fieldwork Coordinator for the Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) Program at North Shore Community College, my role involves securing quality clinical placements for our students for fieldwork and clinical education. Rehabilitation Therapy Associates (RTA) has been a long-time supporter of our program. Under the careful guidance of Karen Hefler, the staff has provided meaningful learning experiences for students in the specialty area of school based occupational therapy. The fieldwork rotations are structured in such a way for the OTA students to grow on both a personal and professional level as they transition from the didactic component of the OTA program to the actual practice environment. The staff are extremely competent and compassionate clinicians and serve as wonderful role models to our students. Thank you RTA for helping to educate the OTA practitioners of tomorrow!" Kim Bushey, OTR/L, Academic Fieldwork Coordinator, OTA Program, North Shore Community College, Danvers, MA