One of ISWP’s key objectives is to ensure more people in need of wheelchairs are provided with properly fitted wheelchairs through competent training and delivery. To enable this, a committee of experienced stakeholders across the globe has formed to focus on promoting the integration of wheelchair service provision training materials in the curriculum of rehabilitation professional education programs (including occupational therapy, physical therapy, prosthetics and orthotics, and community-based rehabilitation). This committee aims to understand the global current standard of education, as well as barriers and facilitators to this education. The committee also develops new resources, collects existing resources and shares resources in order to promote improved wheelchair service education in educational institutions worldwide. If you’re interested to participate in the Integration Subcommittee activities, please contact ISWP Research and Training Coordinator, Krithika Kandavel at email@example.com
Paula Rushton, PH.D.
Université de Montréal, Canada
Paula Rushton is an Assistant Professor in the School of Rehabilitation, Occupational Therapy Program at the University of Montréal and a researcher at the CHU Ste-Justine Research Center. She obtained her MClSc(OT) from the University of Western Ontario (1999), her PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences from the University of British Columbia (2010) and her postdoctoral training at the University of Montréal in Biomedical Sciences (2014). Her research is focused on measurement, intervention, knowledge translation and education related to improving the wheeled mobility of both adults and children through an improved wheelchair service provision process. From the measurement, intervention and knowledge translation perspective, Rushton’s expertise lies in the domains of wheelchair skills and wheelchair confidence. From the education perspective, Rushton has been working with the International Society of Wheelchair Professionals Integration Sub-Committee (currently chair) to enhance wheelchair content in health care professional university curricula globally. Rushton currently teaches a 45-hour wheelchair course that addresses all 8-steps of the WHO wheelchair service provision process. Rushton is a Fonds de Recherche du Québec en Santé (FRQS) Junior 1 scholar.
Dr. Hassan I. Sarsak (PhD, OT) received his Doctorate Degree in Rehabilitation Sciences with a Concentration in Occupational Therapy (OT) from the University of Pittsburgh, PA, United States in 2013. Dr. Sarsak has worked in the USA, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan for over 15 years in a variety of clinical, academic, and research institutions (i.e., University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, University of Jordan, Hashemite University). Throughout his career, he has provided services for individuals from different populations (i.e., Pediatrics, Adolescents, Adults, Geriatrics) with different diagnoses (i.e., Psychiatric Disorders, Neuro-physical Dysfunctions, Cognitive Disabilities, Learning Difficulties). In 2017, in response to the need of more wheelchair professionals and to enhance the quality of service delivery to wheelchair users, Dr. Sarsak developed the Wheelchair Training Program (WTP) for Rehabilitation and OT Students and integrated it into Rehabilitation Curricula/Programs in both Jordan and Saudi Arabia. In 2018, Dr. Sarsak received a trainer recognition certificate from the International Society of Wheelchair Professionals (ISWP) and he has been a certified wheelchair service provider ever since. In 2018, Dr. Sarsak developed an OT Program and Curriculum at Batterjee Medical College in Saudi Arabia and is currently the Head of the Program. In 2020, Dr. Sarsak authored a book entitled “Comprehensive Dictionary in Occupational Therapy” to be the first Arabic dictionary in the Occupational Therapy profession worldwide.
Dr. Sarsak has been working as an honorable/associate editor, peer reviewer and publishing at different international peer reviewed journals, such as the World Federation of Occupational Therapists Bulletin, the Open Journal of Occupational Therapy, Annals of International Occupational Therapy, WORK: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment & Rehabilitation, and Journal of Physical Medicine, Rehabilitation & Disabilities. Dr. Sarsak has the following research, academic, and clinical interests: (1) Mental Health and Psychiatric Rehabilitation, (2) Wheeled Mobility and Seating Interventions, (3) Assistive Technology, (4) Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities, (5) Workstation Ergonomics, (6) Pediatric and School-based Rehabilitation, (7) Geriatric Rehabilitation, (8) Curriculum Development, and (9) OT Profession Learning and Awareness Development.
Dr. Sarsak career objectives are to: (1) Obtain a position that allows combining research, clinical, and academic expertise, (2) Develop skills as an evidence-based scientist, (3) Develop and mentor rehabilitation and OT research, clinical, and academic programs, (4) Advocate for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and enhance services provided to improve satisfaction and empower their functional performance, and (5) Promote the OT profession.
Hebrew University, Israel
Lori Rosenberg has worked in seating and mobility for over 20 years, 10 of which include teaching the subject at university level as well as continued education for clinicians (both OT and PT) . She has worked with both children and adults, though presently she is working in a special education school, mostly with children 6-21 who have physical disabilities and can nor be mainstreamed. She is presently working on a doctorate about teaching powered mobility to multiple, severely handicapped children who do not have independent mobility. She is happy to co-operate with others so we can all help our clients reach meaningful goals.
Integration Subcommittee Members
Listed below are the Integration Subcommittee members as of 16th May 2018.
|Paula Rushton, University of Montreal (chair)|
|Nicky Seymour, Motivation|
|Nancy Augustine, University of Pittsburgh|
|Yohali Burrola, University of Pittsburgh|
|Megan D’Innocenzo, University of Pittsburgh|
|Mary Goldberg, University of Pittsburgh|
|Krithika Kandavel, University of Pittsburgh|
|Jon Pearlman, University of Pittsburgh|
|Barbara Crane, Hartford University|
|Rosy Dorman, Motivation|
|Sue Eitel, Eitel Global|
|Ritu Ghosh, Mobility India|
|Michelle Hollier, UCPRUK|
|Hanan, University of Jordan|
|Hasan, University of Jordan|
|Lee Kirby, Dalhousie University|
|Alex Miles, University of Pittsburgh|
|Taavy Miller, UNC Charlotte|
|Kylie Mines, Motivation Australia|
|Teresa Plummer, Belmont University|
|Uta Prehl, Handicap International|
|Samantha Shann, WFOT|
|Hassan Sarak, University of Jordan|
|Maria Toro, CES University|
|Mathieu Andrieux, University of Montreal|
|Karen Fung, University of Montreal|
|Melina Gauther, University of Montreal|
|Stephanie Vasquez, University of Pittsburgh|