Saturday, May 16, 2009

“Vargus International Hand Therapist Teaching Award”

Mary Nordlie, OTR/L CHT (Certified Hand Therapist) was kind enough to share with us some pictures and a brief summary of her experiences when she visited Egypt in November, 2008:

Mary speaking at the Egyptian Orthopaedic Association

"In January 2008, I was awarded the “Vargus International Hand Therapist Teaching Award” from the American Association For Hand Surgery (AAHS). The purpose of the award is to share experiences and exchange expertise in the area of Hand therapy with therapists and physicians around the world. This year the trip was to Egypt in November 2008 with Dr. Nash Naam from Southern Illinois University. Our goal was to share how the surgeon and hand therapist work as a cohesive team to provide the most effective treatment to patients with hand injuries and to encourage OTs and PTs in Egypt to specialize in this area.

We spoke to very receptive groups at numerous events including the 60th Egyptian Orthopedic
Association in Cairo, The Egyptian Association for Hand Surgery in Alexandria, a hospital’s surgical and therapy staff and the Cairo University’s Department of Physical Therapy. The University expressed interest learning more about Occupational Therapy as an area of study. In addition to lecturing, I was invited to see patients at the only clinic where there is a therapist (PT) working with a Hand Surgeon. That evening we shared experiences and I was able to provide treatment ideas for his patients from a different perspective. My 35+ years experience as an OT with 27 years as a Hand Therapist made it easy to find things to do! I have been in contact with several therapists in Egypt since I have left and am very pleased to see that there is a seed planted there for more growth in the field of “Hand Therapy.” Over all, I had a fabulous experience in Egypt and was pleased with the acceptance I had by the physicians, University faculty and therapists everywhere I went.

Mary with university staff.

I have been invited back to present at the Egyptian Association for Hand Surgery (EAHS) April 2010 and hope to present to a room filled with interested Occupational and Physical Therapists. Meanwhile, I would enjoy hearing from any therapists interested or whom may have questions related to the upper extremity and treatment."

Speaking with PT students at the university.

Consultation with PT and patient in clinic.

Consultation with PT and patient.

Mary Nordlie, MS, OTR/L CHT (Certified Hand Therapist)

Minneapolis, Minnesota, MN