AlPikeCP at aol.com
AlPikeCP at aol.com
Sun Apr 11 09:19:36 PDT 1999
In a message dated 4/10/99 11:42:22 PM Central Daylight Time,
phoenix2 at magicnet.net writes:
<< I'm talking about people out there working independently who don't KNOW
what they are doing, and for whom EVERYthing is trial and error. These
people should not be working without supervision. This is what we are
talking about! >>
George on this I could not agree with you more. One of my many phone calls a
number of years ago doing technical support was from a technician. He told me
he had an appointment with a 16 year HD amputee in a few hours for a cast. He
wanted to know how to take a cast for this level of amputation. Trying to
persuade him not to do the cast and to wait for the certified prosthetist to
return was not successful and he hung up on me.
I have interviewed graduates of some of the O&P programs and when asked how
much experience they had in school doing a certain common procedure (fitting)
the answer was none. Likewise I have heard first hand from graduates tell
about how they were put into offices on their own without supervision and how
they had only their school books to refer to for fittings. This particular
individual was telling how the new gel liner inserts saved him from his
inability to fit PTB prosthesis.
Everyday amputees are being fit in this country by individuals without any
formal training in prosthetics. As criminal as this may sound it is all very
legal. I am sure there are parallels in other professions as well.
I could go on and on with examples and stories to support you on this, but
now is not the time to write a book. Lets just say I agree with you on this
I believe in a strong mentoring system where a recent graduate from a formal
education program in prosthetics has the opportunity to work closely with
someone who has at least 10-15 years of experience on their own. This was my
own experience and maybe why I support it. It also works well in other
professions such flying and the military. It has a proven track record, and
worked in prosthetics for hundreds of years before.
Likewise my school instructors were prosthetists that had proven themselves
successful in the real world and were known for the expertise in fitting
Can we revisit these questions:
What reason(s) would you give a bright young person today to pursue a life
long career in prosthetics?
Why would a bright individual choose to become a prosthetist under the AUA
How much support has there been for AUA from amputees?
Who are the "few energetic skilled organizers" that will organize the
amputees to take the action you suggest?
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