Occupational therapy is a healthcare service that provides assistance to individuals whose ability to function in daily life has been disrupted by physical illness or injury, development problems, or the aging process.
Occupational therapy offers specialized services for patients with problems affecting the hand, wrist, and elbow. Our specialty trained occupational therapists understand the complexities of the hand and the arm. They work with each patient to design a customized rehabilitation program that will suit individual needs and abilities. Our goal is to maximize the function of the hand and/or the arm, as soon as possible, following an injury, disease or surgery.
Through assessment, evaluations, and treatment, occupational therapy practitioners support individuals in:
- Learning personal care, such as bathing or dressing.
- Re-educating stroke patients to compensate for losses.
- Strengthening upper extremities (shoulders, elbows, wrists, and hands) to maintain independence.
- Measuring and fitting splinting and adaptive equipment.
- Evaluating and tailoring the patient's wheelchair to accommodate the patient's abilities, environment, comfort, and safety needs.
- Regaining the use of an injured hand.
- Improving function through cognitive/perceptual activity.
- Overcoming feeding/oral motor problems.
- Preventing deformities, reducing disability, and alleviating pain from illness or injury.
- Executing visual rehab techniques.
- Driving rehabilitation.
- Providing ergonomic assessments for patients and businesses, including evaluating patient and employee work stations for optimal posture and body position and evaluating related hobbies.
- Learning activities of living, including cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc.
The Sanford Luverne Medical Center Rehabilitation Services Department is staffed by one of the most experienced rehabilitative teams in the area. Our therapists are held to the highest ethical standards, as they are all members of national professional organizations. The rehab team includes: seven physical therapists, two physical therapy assistants, four occupational therapists, one speech language pathologist, three massage therapists, and four rehabilitation aides.
- Karla graduated with a master's degree in occupational therapy from the College of Saint Catherine in 1999. Her areas of special interest are orthopedics, geriatrics, stroke rehab, cognitive assessment and treatment, ergonomics/work site evaluations, urinary incontinence, and hospice/home care. She has her certification in physical agent modalities with her most recent training in nerve entrapments of the upper extremity and the cognitive performance test.
- Becky graduated from the College of St. Catherine's in St. Paul in 1996 with a bachelor's degree in occupational therapy. Becky is certified in physical agent modalities and recently became certified in ASTYM (augmented soft tissue mobilization), a treatment system designed to identify and stimulate dysfunctional tissue. Her areas of special interest include orthopedic and upper extremity injuries.
- Vicky graduated with a bachelor's degree in occupational therapy from the College of St. Catherine in 2000. Her areas of special interest are geriatrics and pediatrics. Her most recent training involves the physical agent modalities for the occupational therapist.
Rehabilitation Services are available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Saturdays for inpatients. To schedule an appointment, please call SLMC at (507) 283-2321, or the department directly at (507) 449-1229.