Friday, September 15, 2017

My OT Story: By Kathleen Shanfield

Story 1: 
Rancho Los Amigos has such a rich history of caring for patients, however participating in research has also always been important. I have been able to be involved in research as a “subject”, a research assistant and even as a published author! As a subject, I was on a treadmill while breathing polluted air, and also had tubes stuck up my nose to measure sinus pressure (ugh). I have collected data on hand surgery patients, use of mobile arm supports, aging with disability, and now for brain computer interface! This involvement in research has enriched my life as an OT at Rancho.

Story 2:
When I first started working at Rancho Los Amigos in 1980, I was on the Pulmonary Ward. I was responsible for taking care of all the young men with muscular dystrophy (MD) that lived there. They were the longest living patients with MD at the time. I became very close to the “boys” and spend hundreds of hours making splints, switches, arm supports and contraptions to allow them to drive their wheelchairs and do jobs like deliver mail around the hospital. To this day I credit them with my dedication to technology and problem solving that I use every day in the Center for Applied Rehabilitation Technology (CART)!

By: Kathleen Shanfield, OTR/L

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