JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute has nationally recognized occupational therapy programs, which offer a variety of individualized services for you and your loved ones. Our highly educated and caring therapists enable people of all ages to live life to their fullest. Our comprehensive therapy programs include interaction with patients, families, caregivers as well as other healthcare professionals to provide optimal care. Education techniques to prevent recurring injury and maintain renewed mobility is incorporated in the program.
What is an Occupational Therapist (OT)?
An Occupational Therapist is a licensed, highly educated health care professional who can evaluate and treat individuals who have medical problems or other health related conditions in order to promote optimal health and function. They work with patients who have physical, developmental and cognitively disabling conditions. Occupational therapists evaluate each patient to determine any impairments that limit the patient’s ability and develop treatment techniques to address these areas. They work to increase a patient’s function to their maximum potential in the activities that are necessary and meaningful in their living and working environments.
Quality of care is our number one priority. Our occupational therapy staff receive extensive training and attain multiple certifications and specialties including:
Certified Stroke Rehabilitation Specialist
Certified Hand Therapist
Certified Lymphedema Therapist
Certified Driving Rehabilitation Specialist
At JFK JRI, OT programs are available in the following settings:
Visual deficits can impact every aspect of a person’s life. The OTs at JFK JRI are skilled in the art of assessing visual deficits and finding the appropriate treatments to most benefit the client. Common problems may include weakness of eye muscles and difficulty with eye coordination. Many people do not realize that even the simplest of changes to one’s vision can lead to difficulty with driving, reading, watching television, or concentrating on a conversation with another person. Vision changes may be caused by various conditions including diseases such as multiple sclerosis, macular degeneration, diabetes, glaucoma, eye trauma, stroke, traumatic brain injury, etc.
There are various levels of cognition which range from basic alertness and orientation to high level skills. The OTs at JFK JRI are highly skilled in addressing the various levels of cognition with each of their clients. Treatment programs are focused on strategies to maximize independence in the home and in the community. Cognition re-training can include memory skills, attention skills, awareness to neglected sides of the body, and problem solving skills, as these can greatly have been affected following a stroke, traumatic brain injury or degenerative neurological diseases.
Lymphedema, a swelling of body part due to an accumulation of protein-rich fluid, most often occurs in the extremities, but can also occur in the face, the trunk, the abdomen or the genital area. It is caused by congenital malformations of the lymphatic system or from surgery or radiation therapy for cancer. Provided by Outpatient Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy in Edison, our Certified Lymphedema Therapists are trained in Complete Decongestive Therapy (CDT), a gold standard of lymphedema management. The goals are to reduce the swelling and maintain the reduction. The program consists of gentle manual therapy techniques, compression therapy, exercises, skin care, and education.
JFK JRI therapists are dedicated in providing caring and high quality care using the latest research in the treatment of upper extremity conditions. Common upper extremity conditions treated in the Hand Therapy program includes carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, trigger finger, dequervain’s tenosynovitis, nerve palsy, tendon/nerve lacerations, and fractures. After a thorough evaluation, an individualized treatment program is designed which may include soft tissue mobilization, range of motion therapeutic heat, custom splinting, dexterity training, strengthening and education.
New or experienced drivers who have physical, visual or cognitive impairments due to illness, trauma, aging or disease may benefit from JFK JRI’s state certified Driver Training Program. The primary goal is to evaluate and train individuals to drive in order to allow of increased participation in work, school, and leisure activities. A pre-driver evaluation, on the road evaluation, and on the road training is available through the program. At JFK JRI, our driver training instructor are also licensed OTs who are certified driver rehabilitation specialists.
Our specialists also assess for the need for an adaptive equipment need. In addition to teaching clients on how to operate adaptive equipment, the driving instructor also provides information regarding suppliers and funding for adaptive driving equipment such as hand controls and left foot gas pedal. They are also trained in working with clients with bioptic telescopes. When training is complete, clients who require adaptive equipment must participate in a Motor Vehicle Commission Road Test. The driving instructor is available to accompany the client to the test in the JFK JRI’s vehicle.