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When OTs Wore White Shoes

The Gift of Song
June 16, 2015 10:00 AM by Debra Karplus
When I started college in the early 1970s, I developed a passion for classical music. Lucky for those of us at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, we have the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, a relatively new concert hall when I was Read More...
OT and Wii
May 19, 2015 11:38 AM by Debra Karplus
I stepped into a special education functional life skills classroom at the high school last week. From the doorway, it appeared to be a big free-for-all, with loud music and students, and their special education teachers and aides moving around in all Read More...
Mr. Magoo and Disabilities
April 9, 2015 12:30 PM by Debra Karplus
Raised in the 1950s, like many children, I spent hours in front of the television, an innovation in home entertainment back then as well as a large piece of furniture. There were only a few channels. TV was not on 24/7 as it is today. I confess that one Read More...
Confidentiality and Healthcare
March 18, 2015 1:57 PM by Debra Karplus
I turned on the television last night, to a channel that exclusively plays reruns of popular old shows. I was delighted to see "The Bob Newhart Show." On air from 1972 to 1978, Bob starred in this sitcom as Dr. Bob Hartley, a psychologist with an endearing Read More...
Voting and Disability
November 3, 2014 2:19 PM by Debra Karplus
With election season here, most of us take our right to vote for granted. You simply drive or walk to your nearby polling place, cast your ballot, and stroll away smiling, touting with your new "I voted" sticker. For people with disabilities, the right Read More...
A Disability Resource Expo
October 27, 2014 11:47 AM by Debra Karplus
October is National Disability Awareness month. This year our community hosted its eighth annual Disability Resource Expo, as it does each October. This county-wide event has grown larger each year and has moved from the mall to its new location at our Read More...
Where Did You Receive Your OT Training?
September 22, 2014 9:55 AM by Debra Karplus
I was doing some cleaning and organizing and stumbled upon a few of my old college textbooks. I started thinking about some of my occupational therapy classes at the University of Illinois at Chicago in the mid-1970s, and about my professors there. I Read More...
A Squeamish OT
August 11, 2014 10:39 AM by Debra Karplus
I have a confession to make, that many of my friends do not even know about me; though many people perceive me as being "tough," I am really easily "grossed out." Snakes do not bother me; and spiders frighten me only because my last encounter with an Read More...
The Americans with Disabilities Act and You
July 21, 2014 11:38 AM by Debra Karplus
July 26, 1990 marks the date that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), was signed into law by President George Bush, legislation that was initially presented to the federal government by Senator Tom Harkin in 1988. I have a vivid recollection of Read More...
Who was Eleanor Clarke Slagle?
July 14, 2014 11:30 AM by Debra Karplus
If you have attended any of the annual conventions of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) or paid proper attention to the articles in the American Journal of Occupational Therapy (AJOT), then you are certainly aware of the Eleanor Clarke Read More...
Insurance Rules
June 9, 2014 9:37 AM by Debra Karplus
Being in occupational therapy school in the early 1970s, I have a vague recollection of a very short lecture in an OT Administration class about insurance coverage for occupational therapy, and specifically about Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) Read More...
Giving OT Presentations to High School Students
June 2, 2014 9:04 AM by Debra Karplus
Over the years, I've been asked many times to talk to a high school health careers class, of perhaps a dozen students, about occupational therapy. A few years ago I created a simple thirty-two slide Power Point presentation that I tweak a bit with a few Read More...
A Few Lessons that I Have Learned from my Patients and Clients
March 31, 2014 9:41 AM by Debra Karplus
Reminiscing on four decades of occupational therapy work reminds me of some lessons I've learned from people who received my services. As an OT student I was sometimes ambivalent about my course of study; family and friends weren't particularly supportive Read More...
Disability Etiquette
March 10, 2014 1:41 PM by Debra Karplus
A friend just returned from a lovely vacation in Philadelphia, city of brotherly love. While walking downtown, she spotted a man using a blind cane, and ran over to help him open a door. "Forget you, tourist!" the man shouted at her. He actually used Read More...
Home Visit Safety
February 10, 2014 12:11 PM by Debra Karplus
Visiting patients or clients in their homes in rural central Illinois for adult wheelchair assessments, school-aged child evaluations, or birth-to-three early interventions, was how I spent much of my professional life as an occupational therapist in Read More...