Occupational therapist Erika Pond Clements has a private practice in the Kitchener-Waterloo area of Ontario. Here she helps clients to recover from auto accidents (with such injuries as those to the neck and back) and return to their daily activities, including work.
Her clients value the practical approach that Erika uses. Clients are all different and by seeing them in their own homes she is able to understand their particular needs. Erika may consult with a different team of health professionals for every client. She may also be the first rehabilitation professional that people see after hospital care. At this time she assesses their present level of functioning and how their environment either enables or delays their recovery. Erika also finds out what the clients see as their priorities for recovery and returning to work.
It’s not just the physical injury that she helps with, but also emotional problems that may result from it. According to Erika, for some people, the trauma and pain experienced from an injury can be so overwhelming that it can affect all aspects of their lives, especially their daily functioning. She assists them by helping set priorities and breaking their goals down into manageable steps.
Erika also provides services to clients who are temporarily off work due to mental health or other types of disability. She provides cognitive-behavioural interventions to assist a client to regain functional capabilities at home and in the community. Discussions about return to work occur over time in order to identify client’s strengths that support recovery and return to work, as well as potential barriers that need to be addressed in order to support recovery and return to work. Collaboration with insurer and employer stakeholders as well as other members of the health care team facilitate the process of successful return to work.
Erika Pond Clements can by reached be e-mail at email@example.com for further information.
This article first appeared in the September/ October 2002 issue of Occupational Therapy Now magazine published by the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists. Reviewed July 2010.
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