Two Good Shepherd Associates Receive Assistive Technology Practitioner Certifications3/3/2008
Good Shepherd Now Employs About 17 Percent of All ATPs in Pennsylvania
March 3, 2008
Allentown, PA—Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network's Angela Brown, COTA/L, ATP, driver training specialist, and Maggie Johnsson, MTP, ATP, recently received certifications as Assistive Technology Practitioners from the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (R.E.S.N.A.). R.E.S.N.A. is an Arlington, Virginia-based interdisciplinary association of professionals that promotes research, development, education, provision and advocacy of assistive technology for individuals with disabilities.
Assistive technologies are devices that increase, maintain and improve the functional capabilities of people with disabilities. Specific assistive technology devices range from wheelchairs and computer access aids to specialized phones and environmental control units.
"All of our therapists at Good Shepherd's Wheelchair Clinic now are certified Assistive Technology practitioners, including some of our therapy assistants," says Amy Kirkner, MPT, ATP, wheelchair clinic coordinator. "Our staff has sacrificed a lot of time and effort to reach this level of certification, and that it is a prime example of the dedication we have made to providing our clients the best possible care."
Brown, of Allentown, received an associate's degree in occupational therapy from Lehigh Carbon Community College in 1990 and joined Good Shepherd after graduation. She has worked in numerous departments for Good Shepherd, including pediatrics, hand therapy, orthopedic rehabilitation and most recently in driver evaluation and training, a program she helped launch in 1998.
Johnsson, of Hilltown, Pennsylvania, is a graduate of the University of Scranton, where she received a bachelor's degree in health sciences in 1996 and a master's degree in physical therapy in 1997. She joined Good Shepherd in 2003 as a physical therapist in the Wheelchair Clinic.
"Good Shepherd places a high value on ATP certification because its attainment demonstrates both professional commitment and a broad knowledge of all aspects of assistive technology," says John Grencer, vice president of Technology at Good Shepherd. "By striving for this level of certification, Angela and Maggie have shown a dedication to their field and their own personal growth."
With these new certifications, Good Shepherd now employs 11 staff members who are certified as assistive technology practitioners (ATPs), which represents about 17 percent of the total number of ATPs employed in the entire state of Pennsylvania, according to data collected by R.E.S.N.A.
Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network, based in Allentown, Pennsylvania, is a nationally recognized rehabilitation leader, offering a continuum of care for people with physical and cognitive disabilities and specializing in assistive and rehabilitation technology. More than 36,000 people come to Good Shepherd each year for specialized programs in stroke, orthopedics, brain injury, spinal cord injury, pediatrics, amputation and more. Good Shepherd provides rehabilitation services in 7 eastern Pennsylvania counties. Good Shepherd operates 14 outpatient sites, 4 inpatient sites, a long-term acute care hospital, 2 long-term care homes for people with severe disabilities, an independent living facility, a Work Services division that provides employment training and job placement and a lifestyle products store called Rehability. Good Shepherd was founded in 1908 when The Rev. John and Estella Raker invited a disabled orphan named Viola into their Allentown, Pennsylvania, home. Good Shepherd is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. For more information, visit www.goodshepherdrehab.org.