FOOTHILL RANCH, Ca., October 7, 2011 -- In observance of October 7th as Worldwide Amputee Awareness Day, prosthetics innovator Össur, the Amputee Coalition, and Johns Hopkins University are announcing today that the three organizations will be working together to create a new, nationwide program to help prosthetists address the emotional needs of people with limb loss. The program, which will launch later this year, is an example of the type of innovative partnerships that are needed to better address the health care needs of amputees.
“While research has shown that a large number of people with limb loss experience depression or other forms of psychological distress, today’s standards of care often leave amputees’ mental health needs unaddressed,” said Kendra Calhoun, ACA’s president and CEO. The new Ossur-ACA emotional well-being initiative will provide important training and educational resources to enable prosthetists to take a more active role in enhancing their patients’ emotional well-being and resilience.
Concept testing to ensure the program’s feasibility and relevance took place during the Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists (AAOP), held earlier this year. Amputees and prosthetists who participated in focus groups at AAOP agreed that mental health issues were a growing and often unrecognized need within the amputee community; both groups also expressed strong support for the new initiative. Clinicians from Johns Hopkins University, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, have begun developing the tools and training materials specifically to be trialed in 2012.
“The Amputee Coalition believes that comprehensive care of the individual is a team responsibility, including prosthetists and the person with limb loss,” Calhoun said. “The Amputee Coalition is developing programs to improve the well-being of people with limb loss. This first phase will build the resources necessary to help connections to local resources, and the program should ultimately make significant positive contributions to amputee resiliency and care continuum. We are grateful to Össur for supporting this important work”
“For four decades, Össur has been dedicated to helping people enjoy lives without limitations, and we are pleased to be partnering with the Amputee Coalition and Johns Hopkins University in developing this new initiative,” said Mahesh Mansukhani, president of Össur Americas.
“We hope that this program will help raise awareness of this often-overlooked issue, and directly support more prosthetists and their patients in pursuing emotional and mental health as well as physical wellness,” he added.
About the Amputee Coalition
The Amputee Coalition is the national nonprofit organization serving more than 2 million people with limb loss and more than 28 million people at risk for amputation. This year, the Amputee Coalition is proudly celebrating 25 years of service.
Össur (NASDAQ OMX: OSSR) is a global leader in non-invasive orthopaedics that help people live a life without limitations. Its business is focused on improving people’s mobility through the delivery of innovative technologies within the fields of braces, supports, prosthetic limbs and compression therapy.
A recognized “Technology Pioneer”, Ossur invests significantly in research and product development; its award winning designs ensuring a consistently strong position in the market. Successful patient and clinical outcomes are further empowered via Ossur’s educational programs and business solutions. Headquartered in Iceland, Össur has major operations in the Americas, Europe and Asia, with additional distributors worldwide. Ossur Americas’ headquarters are based in Orange County, CA.