Year in Review...
As 2006 comes to a close, we asked members of our Editorial Advisory Board to share their thoughts and comments on the year that was 2006. What was the most important thing to happen in O&P this year? What event had the most impact? What was the most significant occurrence in O&P business, technology, or policy?
We wish you all the best in 2007!
-From The O&P EDGE team
"No single event may be more significant than a number of changes that have been initiated recently and are still occurring in the area of O&P education which, when taken collectively, may lead to major improvements in the skills of clinicians and the standards of clinical practice within the next decade."
Edward S. Neumann, PhD, PE, CP
Engineering, Rehabilitation Education, Clinical Practice
"The initiative for pedorthists (BCP) and their orthotist-prosthetist colleagues (ABC) to seriously consider joining together is the most significant development for pedorthists in recent memory. Although mergers necessarily involve change and turmoil, any move to unite and strengthen the orthopedic DME field will benefit our collective professions in the long term."
Samus Kennedy, BEng (Mech), CPed
"The establishment of the DARPA two- and four-year advanced upper-extremity prosthetics projects are the most significant events of 2006. The resultant R&D will have an impact on the lives of our patients on a level never experienced before. And the benefits will not be isolated to individuals with upper-extremity amputations, but will result in tremendous advances throughout the field of both orthotics and prosthetics. What we are learning about active and reactive systems will have a profound effect on the future of O&P, and it is not only tremendously rewarding but is also an honor to be personally involved in such an ambitious project."
Randall Alley, BSc, CP, FAAOP, CFT
"Many things have happened during the last year in the O&P industry, but one thing we have lost track of is personalized customer service. The invasion of the pre-recorded voice operating system is stripping the O&P field of the much-needed person-to-person interaction."
Rosielena Jované C., Orthotist/Prosthetist Lic. #2-1, Panama, Republic of Panama
Latin American O&P
"The formation of the O&P Alliance was a monumental achievement for the O&P profession in 2006. For the first time in the history of O&P, four organizations that share some of the same common goals came to the agreement that working together in the political arena would be in the best interest of the individual organizations as well as the profession as a whole. This was a giant step forward."
Paul E. Prusakowski, CPO, FAAOP
Information & Communications Technology
"The gathering momentum of the prosthetic parity initiatives has been of greatest significance. They are vital for both patients and practitioners. You've heard the expression, It takes a village. In the case of prosthetic parity, it takes a country, state by state. These bills impact our future-prosthesis users and professionals. For instance, many insurance companies only pay for one limb per lifetime, and a young amputee, say age 20, is going to need many more limbs if he lives to say, 90. We need many, many more bills passed."
Kevin Carroll, MS, CP, FAAOP