Breaking Down Walls

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By Karen Henry
Karen Henry

When I returned to the office after attending the American Orthotic & Prosthetic Association (AOPA) Policy Forum in Washington DC, the wall between our office suite and the suite next door had been torn down. Fortunately, this was not the result of an act of nature, but rather the culmination of several years of steady growth. We've outgrown yet another office space, so we're "stretching our legs" and expanding our square footage.

Over the last three years, we've added two employees to our editorial staff, which has helped us to meet our need for more articles. This month, I'm pleased to announce that Denise Faddis has joined Marti Randolph in our production department. Denise comes to us with eleven years of experience in the creative industry, including four years as the art director for two international trade publications. In addition to helping us with the layout and design of The O&P EDGE, she's going to be taking on some exciting projects we have planned for the near future. Stay tuned for more information...

While we're breaking down physical walls here at The O&P EDGE, the O&P profession was focused on breaking down other types of barriers during the AOPA Policy Forum, held April 11-12. The first day of the forum served as a government relations primer, with the majority of the speakers explaining the complexities of a variety of talking points developed to help protect the interests of O&P practitioners, their patients, and the industry as a whole. On the second day, attendees went to Capitol Hill, where they were tasked with driving those talking points home during meetings with various members of Congress and their staff.

Mary Andrus, assistance vice president, government relations, for Easter Seals office of public affairs, who gave a presentation as part of a state legislative workshop, outlined the purpose of the Hill visits nicely: "What you are tasked with is educating people [in Congress] about what you do.... They don't know what you do and why you do it and how it relates to specific parts of legislation. What you bring to them are your specifics."

Look for full coverage of the AOPA Policy Forum in our June issue.

This month, we continue to keep an eye on DARPA, as Judith Philipps Otto reports on some of the latest developments to come out of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Revolutionizing Prosthetics program, including updates on the two upper-limb prostheses that have been in development since the program's inception in 2006. Please let us know what you think of this and the other feature articles in this issue.

Thanks for reading.

Karen Henry

Congratulations Sheryl Nathanson, who won The O&P EDGE gift card drawing during the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists Annual Meeting and Scientific Symposium in March. Sheryl is a master of science in prosthetics and orthotics student at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta.