This month we are featuring Mandy Chamberlain MOTR/L as our Clinician of the Month.
I graduated from the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences in 2003 with a focus on community-based practice and a minor in psychology. I currently work PRN at 3 skilled nursing facilities and run SeniorsFlourish.com and the Seniors Flourish Learning Lab Membership site, which helps OT practitioners working with older adults be the best they can be.
I have experience in home health, outpatient, acute care, oncology rehab
and pre-employment/ergonomics/return to work, as well as program
My husband and I have 3 young kids and love exploring the Colorado
mountains, travel and entrepreneurship. We are busy, but have lots of fun!
I am sneaking in 2! My honest favorite quote is: “Outta my way world, I’ve
got my sassy pants on today,” but I truly try to live by: “When was the
last time you did something for the first time?”
What advice do you have for new graduates going into the field of occupational therapy?
I always recommend to new graduates to make sure they ask questions! Sounds obvious, but there is so much to learn about the setting you are in and making sure you have an understanding of the policies, group dynamics, community resources, etc will definitely help you feel more comfortable and confident.
What is the most creative treatment you have ever done with a client?
Not sure if it is the most creative, but one of the most fun and client centered, was the time that my patient that had experienced a stroke, wanted to plan and throw a party for a friend that was also in the nursing home. She did all the planning, organizing and shopping while we worked on her cognition and then put all the decorations together and set up the room to work on her upper extremity deficits. Plus, it was very rewarding for her to accomplish her goal!
What should every occupational therapist try at least once in his/her life?
I think every OT practitioner should go to national conference at least once. There is something about getting together with thousands of others that have the same passions as you that helps with burnout and revives your love of the profession.
What is on your (work) bookshelf?
On my OT bookshelf I have “Rehabilitation of the Hand and Upper Extremity,” “OT Toolkit,” and “The 36 Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring with Persons with Alzheimer Disease.”
What’s your favorite thing to get out of the supply closet and why?
I like to use Occupation Based Kits that I have set up and stored in the supply closet. It helps keep things occupation-based if you are not working in the patient’s environment.
What song best describes what you do (job)?
I’m going with “Don’t Stop Believin’” I am a half glass full kind of gal!
What medical device would you be?
I would absolutely be something practical, adjustable and multifunctional… I would go with a 3-in-1 commode!
What are the 5 most important items in your clinical work bag?
Top 5 things I keep in my clinical work bag are an oximeter, pen & paper, my folder full of assessments and a water bottle