On The air
List of Episodes
You can listen to On The air using your preferred podcasting service including iTunes and Stitcher by searching by the title or via this site by clicking on the desired episode below.
Cheryl Crow is an occupational therapist who has lived with rheumatoid arthritis for 16 years. In 2019 she created a video and social media channel called Arthritis Life to educate, empower and inspire patients with arthritis and their providers. On Arthritis Life, she shares life hacks from the OT perspective, patient stories, provider interviews, and product reviews in a fun, talk show-style format.
Cheryl has volunteered for the Arthritis Foundation in numerous educational and advocacy events, including speaking at the Juvenile Arthritis Conference, KAT-FISH camp for kids and families with arthritis, and many adult-focused arthritis events. While attending many arthritis focused events, in addition to participating in social media groups focused on rheumatoid arthritis, she observed a huge unmet need for patients to have help in navigating simple daily activities.
She performed independent qualitative research on the discussion content of disease-specific Facebook groups, which showed that patients were spending the most time talking about IADLs (instrumental activities of daily living) and mental health/coping skills in these groups. She presented this research at the WFOT conference as well as the national rheumatology conference in 2015.
Arthritis Life was born out of her interest in finding fun, creative ways to address the unmet needs of patients with arthritis and related rheumatic conditions.
Cheryl graduated with her Masters in Occupational Therapy from Samuel Merritt University in Oakland, CA in 2012. For the following 8 years she focused her professional work on pediatric developmental disabilities in outpatient and school settings in the greater Seattle, WA area as well as Shanghai, China. She started teaching as an adjunct faculty member at the Lake Washington Institute of Technology's OTA program in 2016 and she greatly enjoys educating the future workforce of OT practitioners.
Connect with Cheryl:
Resources mentioned on this episode:
Polly Benson, OTR/L, is a licensed occupational therapist with 28 years of experience treating patients in multiple settings. She currently works for Comprehensive Therapy Consultants in Atlanta, GA as a school based OT. She is a graduate of The Ohio State University. Polly has extensive experience in technology apps and strategies designed to assist clients for achieving therapy goals. She is a distinguished therapist and seasoned continuing education instructor. She volunteers at her local high school as the theater troupe Booster Club President, and at her church as a high school small group leader.
Recently Polly invented a new product called the Legi-Liner to help students with improving their handwriting. On this episode, she talks about how she got the idea for that innovation and gives tips to others who may also be interested in product creation and development.
Polly's product can be purchased via her website, www.Legiliner.com.
Connect with Polly:
David Puder, MD, is a physician who practices medicine as a psychiatrist. David hosts a podcast called the Psychiatry & Psychotherapy Podcast and has an interest in helping students overcome test anxiety. He has also spoken on the topic of test anxiety on Session 337 of The PreMed Years podcast.
On this episode, David talks about how test anxiety can serve as a barrier for people who are trying to get into occupational therapy (OT) school as well as for those in OT school and OT students who are preparing to take the certification exam and strategies that have been found effective in addressing text anxiety.
Maureen Warden has been an occupational therapist for 23 years. After earning a bachelor's degree in health science from SUNY Cortland in central New York, she completed a master's in occupational therapy at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. Her early career was in a general hospital setting, working primarily within the inpatient and stroke population. As part of that hospital position, she was sent to the Intermediary Unit near the hospital in which she worked to provide school based services. From that point on, Maureen's focus has been school-based therapy services. She is a veteran member of an interdisciplinary team in a program for children with hearing loss. On a personal front, her life is busy with an active family of five; she and her husband of 25 years have raised our three now-adult children in rural northwest New Jersey and the whole family enjoys all things outdoors.
On this episode, Maureen discusses her work as an OT in a school for deaf children.
Michelle Finet is an occupational therapist who has worked with children and youth for over 20 years specializing in the areas of sensory integration and autism. She has worked with clients with a wide range of diagnoses including but not limited to Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, torticollis, developmentally delays, brachial plexus injuries, cognitive impairment, muscular dystrophy, and attention deficit disorder.
Michelle has experience running a company providing therapy services through a contract with the state of Arizona as well as working as an ergonomics consultant in multiple settings. She currently teaches full-time in the OT program at Touro University in Henderson, Nevada. Her research focuses on how OT can be more involved with working with and providing services to members of the LGBTQIA+ community, and she provides services one day per week in a primary care clinic focused on serving that community.
On this episode, Michelle talks about how she became interested in working with individuals in the LGBTQIA+ community and shares about the role of OT in providing occupational therapy services for people in this context.
Connect with Michelle via email
Connect with the Coalition of Occupational Therapy Advocates for Diversity (COTAD)
Meghann Rose has been a pediatric OT for almost 14 years. Her first 12 years were spent working at a Children's Hospital in Rochester, NY, where she helped establish a team-based approach to occupational therapy in the NICU and where she focused on infant feeding, positioning and transition to home.
In 2007, Meg and neurologist Jennifer Kwon established the Brachial Plexus Outpatient Clinic and in 2011 they received a grant to develop a protocol for care of infants with brachial plexus injuries and a referral system.
In 2017, Meg transitioned from the hospital setting to private practice, and she now works in an outpatient clinic as part of a feeding team and with infants with brachial plexus injuries. In addition, she works with children and families as part of the Early Intervention system. She has published an article on feeding and another on brachial plexus injuries. Meg is also a mom to three kids ages 10, 8 and 4 and participates in hobbies that include photography and volunteering with the local ambulance core.
On this episode, Meg shares about her path into OT and as a specialist in BPI, and she discusses the different types of BPI and how each is addressed via the protocol.
Connect with Meg via email at email@example.com.
Narrative medicine is an approach that used in clinical practice, research, and education to promote growth, learning, and/or healing through the use of story (or narrative). That story may be communicated in a variety of ways, including through the use of theater, and that's what the guest on this episode has done in her work as an occupational therapist and an occupational therapy educator.
Sally Wasmuth, PhD, OTR, is Assistant Professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Human Sciences at Indiana University, Indianapolis. She has a background in African-American Studies, Philosophical Studies of Biology, and Occupational Therapy. Her research focuses on translational and implementation science, particularly in the areas of occupation-based intervention for addictive disorders and dual-diagnosis. Sally is involved in several arts-based recovery initiatives, including the use of theatre as both a therapeutic intervention and a means of stimulating community conversations on critical topics including the opioid crisis and healthcare inequities related to race and gender.
Recommendations & resources from this episode:
Tools for OT faculty to help students explore their own bias, as developed by Sally and others:
Contact Sally via email
Ali Isso and Holly Masters are both Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants (COTAs) who work with the older adult population in nursing homes and hospitals.
Through their work, Ali and Holly have observed depression and loneliness, which are overwhelmingly prevalent with older adults and which have been linked to loss of independence, decreased motivation, and social withdrawal. In fact, according to the CDC, approximately 7 million adults over 65 experience depressive symptoms each year. Additionally, 60% of adults in long term care facilities do not receive visitors often, whether it be because their family is busy or lives out of town.
To address these problems, Ali and Holly co-Founded Purpose Therapy Box, a gift box subscription service that allows for the delivery of useful products that inspire positivity and enhance quality of life through personalized products designed to encourage independence, improve well-being, and overall health.
Both Ali and Holly are graduates of the Pennsylvania State University Occupational Therapy Assistant program as well as the Human Development and Family Studies Program. Ali works with the older adult population in both the hospital and SNF setting. Ali says that she has always had a passion for the older adult population and while doing her clinical rotations in OT school, she realized that so much more could and needs to be done. Holly works as a COTA in a skilled nursing facility in northwestern PA and a rehabilitation hospital in northeast Ohio. Her passion is working with the older adult population as she recognizes that they have the best stories and remind me to cherish the little things in life. Holly is a dog mamma to two beautiful Boston Terriers: Betsy and Eloise, and she loves growing plants/trees!
Ali and Holly started their company, Purpose Therapy Box, in June 2018 as a way to keep families connected and send functional items and with therapy box themes to remind our older loved ones they are not forgotten.
Resources & Recommendations from this episode:
Connect with Ali & Holly:
Erin Grujic has been an occupational therapist for 19 years. She had a dream many years ago about having a mobile sensory clinic to rural communities in Southern Alberta. Two years ago, she started working as an OT practitioner in the private sector and then one year ago was able to bring her dream to life through the creation of a mobile sensory integration clinic, which she says aligns well with her passion for working with children and their families by bringing the clinic to them rather than requiring the families to travel long distances to get services. Erin received her SIPT certification in 2009.
On this episode, Erin shares about her quest to build the sensory bus and to bring OT services to the community via this platform. She talks about funding issues, marketing, and the use of the sensory bus as a therapeutic tool in working with her clients and others. To find out how to connect with Erin and to access the resources mentioned on this episode, go to www.ontheair.us
Resources & Recommendations from this Episode:
Connect with Erin:
As third-year OT students preparing to graduate from the Master's level program at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, TN, Chelsea Chandler Holden and Caroline Montague share about a unique experience in the field that both say really helped to shape their learning as future OT practitioners. Both Chelsea and Caroline volunteered at an event called Tikkun Olam Makers (TOM) held at Vanderbilt University in Nashville in January 2019. On this episode, we talk about how an experience like TOM can serve as a significant professional learning development opportunity for OT students and practitioners.
To learn more about the TOM initiative, visit https://tomglobal.org/
For more information about the TOM event (past or future) at Vanderbilt, check out their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/tikkunolammakers.vanderbilt/
The host of the On The Air podcast, I have practiced as an occupational therapist for over 25 years and am an OT educator specializing in ed tech and instructional design.